Atheism’s growing pains

Discussion in 'Alternative' started by Nick the Pilot, Oct 6, 2012.

  1. Nick the Pilot

    Nick the Pilot Well-Known Member

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  2. Paladin

    Paladin Purchased Bewilderment

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    I like the move toward social justice.
     
  3. Nick the Pilot

    Nick the Pilot Well-Known Member

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    According to my belief system, when we die and then immediately face judgement for our good/bad karma, we are not asked if we believe in Jesus, Buddha, etc. (I believe the question doesn’t even come up.) We are asked if we led a good life (and to prove it by giving examples.) I believe a good atheist is making progress towards nirvana/heaven, whereas a bad Christian/Muslim is actually losing progress.

    It's better to be a good atheist than a bad Christian/Muslim!
     
  4. Thomas

    Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Hi Nick —
    By whom, might I ask? I've always wondered.

    God bless,

    Thomas
     
  5. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

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    The theosophist answer to this will be enlightening....

    As to the atheist...I would think leaving a good corpse, not full of toxins (are we ever gonna quit this egyptian embalming thing and quit poisoning our soils?) would be the proper answer for the afterlife.

    For me....I can't fathom any anthropomorphic asking occurring....if anything I see a natural selection, a sieve of sorts that separates the wheat from the chaff the good seeds from the bad, categorizes by size, texture, quality, and selects what field to plant us in next....where we will germinate.....
     
  6. IowaGuy

    IowaGuy Hunter-Gatherer

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    Have you seen The Fountain? Your description reminds me of the Maya tree of life at the end of that movie...
     
  7. wil

    wil UNeyeR1

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    No, have not....will look for it.
     
  8. Nick the Pilot

    Nick the Pilot Well-Known Member

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    Wil,
     
    I like the way you put the two words Theosophy and enlightenment in the same sentence. According to Theosophy, the purpose of life is for us to strive for and achieve enlightenment.
     
    I agree with your idea that we are going through a natural selection, where the wheat is separated from the chaff. But I think this happens with our personalities as well as with our physical bodies.
     
  9. Thomas

    Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Hi Wil —
    I can see karma working as a mechanistic process — cause and effect — but that can't encompass the moral dimension, and there's the rub, for me.

    So 'the sins of the fathers visited on the sons' is, in many ways, common sense: If we all drive round in gas-guzzlers, there's no gas left when our kids grow up, but that still does not address the moral issue.

    The anthropomorphic question revolves around whether we are made in His image, or we make Him in our image — or whether or not there is common ground between God and man. If not, then all religious endeavour is hopeless, if there is, then 'how' is it?

    That's why I cleave to metaphysics and traditional philosophy as the authentic commentaries on doctrine, to my mind, no other school of thought addresses this question with adequate depth or rigour.

    God bless,

    Thomas
     
  10. Ecumenist

    Ecumenist New Member

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    Because the esoteric view includes a hylozoistic frame of reference, the question Thomas asks ("judged by whom?") is a difficult one to answer.

    (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hylozoism)

    For example, esoteric students regard the very planet upon which we live (and move, and have our being) to be the literal expression (incarnation, outer embodiment) of a Being of tremendous [Cosmic] stature ... as far beyond us in His evolution as we are beyond an ant. This would immediately raise the question to a different scale entirely ~ if that were the end of it.

    However, now consider that precisely such embodiments [of similar Beings, the Elohim, the Prajapatis, the Amshaspends, the Dhyan Chohans, the Seven Spirits before the Throne, etc.] explain what/Who is behind Mars, Venus, Neptune, Mercury, Jupiter, Vulcan, Saturn, Uranus, etc. The same would and does apply to every Solar System, each with a Solar Logos at its Heart [Sol-Helios and Sol Invictus], also with numerous planets orbiting.

    Insert now, as I am doing upon review, the notion that the movements of such bodies, less so strictly upon the physical plane, and more so upon the astral, mental, etc. have tremendous impact upon a little world such as our own (but not excepting the cumulative impress of the conscious, intelligent and largely beneficent denizens thereof, when present, upon and through these various planes) ... and you begin to see not only the wide scope of the matter at hand, but also, if you are insightful, the strictly scientific basis for an esoteric and Soul-centered Astrology.

    Science confirms the material worldview, yet the esotericist affirms that science is largely blind. Man can no more see his Soul than these non-physical counterparts of the physical globe(s) ... yet if there is an astral plane, a mental plane, a Buddhic plane, etc., surely we admit that they emanate from our Earth's heart, the very core of the planet. One Theosophist explained that we may even travel to the moon in our astral body, yet only at perigee, not apogee.

    The thought is dreadful, regardless, but illustrates an idea. Our Earth's astral `body' does not extend infinitely, or reach that of other bodies. Instead, even the mental globe of our Earth is limited. When we are able to reach and travel in our Causal envelope [the true Temple of Solomon], other planets become accessible, and in the Buddhic or Atmic sheaths, this is something the Great Ones have long been able to do. How else do we suppose the Masters were able to teach us, either 150 years ago or 150,000, about Cosmogenesis and the correlating cycles upon Earth called Anthropogenesis? [The Temple Teachings includes a volume on Theogenesis, also said to come from a translation of certain Stanzas of Dzyan, via Master Hilarion and the pupils Francia LaDue & William Dower.]

    Getting back to the notion of who judges, we should consider that in Theosophical and later teachings, though drawing on Hinduism and esoteric Buddhism for their inception, there are said to be lofty beings called Lipika. The Lipika Lords, four in number, correspond with the CROSS, the FOUR CARDINAL DIRECTIONS ~ something ANCIENT, AGELESS, UNIVERSAL and clearly the kind of foundation upon which all of Cosmos rests. Thus, if we wish to enquire regarding the Lamb slain ... (but that is a longer yarn)

    The Lipika Lords are not personal judges of one's individual merit, in that sense, but instead are simply the RECORDING ANGELS as taught in Christianity, whom and which receive and bear the impress of every subtlest movement, thought, expression, intention or idea which occurs on any plane of the system ... or in this case, of our planet. Thus, there is no `escaping' the perfect working out of Karmic Law [according to the 3rd Logos, the Mind of God, or Divine Mind, and for Goodness sake let us not over-anthropomorphize lest we drive the poor Galilean mad with such fuelishness]. And is it not said, "Not one jot nor tittle ... " along with the more poetic, "Not a sparrow falls ... "

    So, though it comforts some, there is no need for the robed figures of fancy. Surely it should not surprise us that if the Soul itself is in touch with the higher ethers (higher Mental plane, upon which and wherein it *resides*) ... and that therefore upon our transition the normal course of events is for a life-review to occur, transcendent, literally, of time, space and even concrete thought. There occurs something of a panorama of every effect, and the sum-total effect, of our life ~ on this planet, this go-round, with limitations only in terms of the degree of perfection of our ability to register that. No doubt there will be rare cases where a man or woman is able to sense how s/he has impacted our neighboring evolutions, especially if we have actually visited some of them. And this is possible.

    Yet more importantly, we shall realize just how important, and impacting have been some of the subtlest, and otherwise-assumed irrelevant actions in our life, while likewise we shall see that some of the things we figured of tremendous import are not ~ or at least, not when seen in this freshly-gained, yet oh-so-familiar perspective. No words can express this realization that in fact, we have never forgotten one shred of the true experience(s) that has or have mattered from previous lives, and so it shall be with this one. Instead, ALL that is noblest, that is finest and that is worth keeping ~ shall be stored. This is called Alaya-Vijnana, and it is a thoroughly sound Christian teaching, to boot.

    Thus the wheat is divided from the chaff, the True Treasure is layed up where it is supposed to be, this having in fact been and being an ongoing, never-ending occurrence in our daily lives ... and of course, since 99.9% of us [flip it] will not in this go-round find our hearts lighter than the feather of Ma'at, so we will come to the close of the life-review, we shall shake off the etheric double to disintegrate along with the dense, and in our astral form we will begin our Journey through the Fields of Aanroo.

    Let us HOPE that we have lived a life worthy of our Calling, whatever this last might have been. For it shall not matter in that sense to Whom or what we have prayed, as some have pointed out, nor even whether we believe in a Deity, as such, at all. For I notice that in the vast majority of cases, the images, ideas and impressions of (much less from) such do not amount to a very large or substantial hill of beans, while indeed, some of the most inflexible, outspoken atheists have made far more lasting and celebrated contributions to our planet and our people.

    It's no matter; we shall all return to make another go of it. And likely another, and another, and another ...

    For additional information on the subject I recommend researching the abilities and Responsibilities of the Maha-Chohan, as taught by One Who knows this Office well enough. Consult the works of Alice Bailey, and pay attention to the Records as the Maha-Chohan [`Great Meditating Dharma-Lord' is the best I can imagine for a good translation; the common form being `Lord of Civilization']. In particular, the charts ~ and the manner by which the Maha-Chohan "precipitates" what he needs from subtler ethers in order to ascertain information. I have always assumed we are still referring to his function in a subtle plane, even as such precipitation occurs. But who knows! Perhaps the accounts are clearer than my current recollections.

    ~+~
    Of course it's me; who else would it be. I was here way back then; and I'll still be here when ~ ;)

    ... but not, of course, forever!

    On that note, since the Inspiration hasn't short-circuited, do at least consider that, where an atheist cannot, or refuses to imagine certain Wonders ... is it any surprise that, in afterlife conditions, the greatest glories (in between lives, in the Devachan of Pure Land Buddhism and Theosophy alike) are often overlooked, as in unexperienced? Of course we shall not be forced to encounter whom and what we have so bitterly and vehemently denied! I find this a combination of Mercy and Compassion, which certainly condition and cooperate the working out of the Divine Scheme, here demonstrating 2nd Logos and 3rd Logos together.

    On the other hand, an individual advanced on the Path and especially aspirational may even skip the largest portion of astral burdens (the Purgatorio), assuming s/he has lived the purest and noblest of lives of service ... and will likely assume a hasty and immediate rebirth, skipping a period of ~700 to ~1500 years in the Devachan to which s/he would normally be entitled. Thus did an HPB return as an Austrian initiate and reached the `Stronghold' in the East (as related by Helena Roerich in her Letters) in 1924 (or '26, I forget which) ... presumably as an Initiate of the Third Degree, as I know her present incarnation (a female of that same standing, more or less). Many other cases can be related, some of whom I know personally, others as taught in esoteric volumes.

    Namaskar
     
  11. Thomas

    Thomas Well-Known Member

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    Hi Ecumenist —
    It's the one on which it all turns ...

    As a by-the-by I would say here I have a traditional (Christian/Platonic) view of 'esoteric' which is not to do with any material order of knowledge, albeit more or less discreet, as you reference it.


    Who on earth taught you that?

    I rather think your 'Lipika Lords' are utter fantasy if you're trying to suggest they have any place in a Christian frame of reference. (There are intercessors, but that's something else entirely.)

    Unlike Theosophical doctrines, there are no intermediaries between God and man. By virtue of its Divine Source, it's a meta-cosmic doctrine which transcends the degrees and distinctions which seem to pack the Theosophical cosmos. It all seems a lot of fuss and bother for nothing, to us:
    "thou art careful, and art troubled about many things: But one thing is necessary" (Luke 10:41-41).

    Christian? Really? Pray show me where ...

    Unless you can demonstrate, with evidence rather than opinion, a Christian connection to such ideas, please leave us out of it! The Theosophical worldview seems exponentially stacked with intermediaries and barriers and degrees and stages and this and that and the other, all getting in the way between God and man, and all rather hopelessly nihilistic for our simple tastes ... ;)

    God bless,

    Thomas
     
  12. Nick the Pilot

    Nick the Pilot Well-Known Member

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    Andrew, good to see you again. A lot of the old members have stopped posting, so many of your old discussion buddies may not see this, your latest post.
     
  13. Nick the Pilot

    Nick the Pilot Well-Known Member

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    Hey, Andrew, what is your new avatar going to look like?
     
  14. Ecumenist

    Ecumenist New Member

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    I don't know, Nick. Right now I'm a little perturbed that - one week later - a post that I made to THIS thread, along with one other, has not showed up. Both went to `a moderator' in order to meet with approval before appearing, just as did the one I spent the last half hour typing.

    Let's see how a shorter post will do.
     
  15. Ecumenist

    Ecumenist New Member

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    Ahh. Much better. Perhaps it's just a wise idea if one wants to see a post go through these days ... to reach the 10 post minimum in order to gain access to certain of the forum's features. That's one way to see it.

    Of course, it doesn't ACCOUNT for what happened to those 2, now 3, posts that I have not received word or contact, regarding ... and since these are innocuous posts, I'm a bit mystified. Do we not have a moderator anymore?

    Is Brian simply overwhelmed? He certainly had time to browse my PROFILE page, so what's his (or anyone else's) holdup in approving a routine post? Hmmm.

    Is it the case that another person moderates this particular set of forums? If so, s/he is negligent of basic responsibilities. Either contact me and notify me, or empty your queue. If you're sitting on something intentionally, you don't deserve (because you can't handle) the responsibilities you've been given.

    I'll try a repost of my post from while ago ... since this one will make #10.
     
  16. Ecumenist

    Ecumenist New Member

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    Nick,

    Thanks for the welcome. Haven't decided on an image ... but it may as well be the old (not Pallas Athene but the wheel of symbols for major world religions). You and I, along with most folks here, recognize that verily there is `One Truth, [with] Many Paths.' That's why I chose `Ecumenist' as my moniker, which was quite easy as it's second nature.

    As for first nature and the ongoing work (both personal and spiritual), most of us know that in Eastern terms this involves Buddha Nature, by whatever name we may refer to it as Theosophists, Hindus (Vaishnavas, Saivites, etc.), Christians, etc. Isn't it amusing that there are folks here who would gladly quibble with the Master Wordsmith and Poet (until they turn blue in the face) as to the naming of a Rose ~ as if they somehow wished us to bow down before their vain displays of the Emperor's new clothes?

    Ego is our difficulty, I have always agreed, not our beloved companion and `Friend of the Ages' [the Soul, or `Ego' of Theosophy, a term coined purely for its Latin connotation prior to the advent of its usage in modern psychology, referring as we know to the true individual in the Causal Body ~ transcendent of personality quirks and shortcomings].

    At times I think it's outrageous that my own LITTLE ego continues to get in the way - whether posting at Interfaith.org, discussing things between friends, or just going about my daily routine & interactions with folks (even vicariously, or indirectly). Then I sometimes stop and consider that nevertheless, what I have learned between the ages of 16 and 20 is probably more in those 4 years than most folks will learn in the next 40, as far as spirituality, metaphysics and true theology (rooted in Theosophical principles) goes. I remain, in some ways as blind to the Reality all around me as your average atheist, or as at least one or two staunch, bass-ackward Roman Catholics we both know. But at least I can count my blessings, work on keeping my composure, and when some of these folks smirk and begin to try to pull apart that which *cannot* be deconstructed, I'll still be smiling. :)

    Their realization lies in a future revelation, a moment of clarity in their afterlife's review (upon crossing the river Styx), or perhaps in the next incarnation. It may take several cycles before some of these folks catch up, and even that may only amount to an intellectual revelation (which we know is a challenging, difficult and often sorrowful path ~ given the imbalance of Manasic dev'mt as compared with the Buddhic downflow which should at least accompany, if not also fully condition and guide the same).

    The hardest path, for me (both personally, as I've experienced it, and as well as I can theorize) is one wherein we know something of our future, of our Soul's intended path and line of unfoldment [track, method & type of planned growth], yet for whatever reason, we balk, we evade the next stage of progress, and thus for a time, we defeat `God's Plan,' as it might be phrased. Some people might not think a thing like this is possible, or they wax platitudinous and wistful. How amusing, yet also how utterly tangent to the fact that people get `off track' every day, in every lifetime (all of us, in that sense, at least occasionally and to some degree), and require a gentle nudging - sometimes a more forcible reminder - before they can resume the Soul's trajectory.

    Of course, atheist or [inflexible, faux-theological-] Catholic, the result is the same when it comes to sitting there in the dirt too long. The horse, if we are fortunate, may be willing to wait ... or in adverse circumstances (we live amidst a time which may be compared with a veritable sandstorm), it may leave us sitting there on our rear. Either way, if we do not at least get back up, (locate and) mount the horse (for the eleventy-fifth hundred time) and press onward, we can only be sure of one thing:

    Although we may not slip into the past (or regress, spiritually speaking), we will nonetheless remain precisely where we fell, by the wayside, making no further progress for the time. And that applies to Christian, Buddhist, atheist, Theosophist or Jesus the Christed, alike. Thank Goodness the latter, and plenty of the rest of these, are quite aware that wasted time cannot be regained ... and thank Goodness so many of us KNOW what a precious, rare moment we are experiencing in the Spiritual Evolution of our Planet, our People and our Present World Religions.

    All Hail those who wave the Banner high!
    Pax Cultura and Sol Invictus!

    All else shall fall by the wayside in its own, proper time, of due course, and best of all, w/o the least worry or needed effort from ourselves, for:

    All things have their season ... ~Eccl. 3: 1-8
    "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God,
    to them who are the called according to God's purpose."
    ~Romans 8:28

    Nick [et al], you will find that I continue (at least for the present) to frame Theosophical teachings (from Ammonius Saccas and the earlier Platonics, forward) and related movements in as close to a contemporary Christian framework as possible. There is a reason why I do this, far more conscious & intentional, and in that sense out of a felt & perceived DHARMA, rather than owing to karma, or because I know no other way to share what I have learned and understand. The only adjustment I'll be making is that I'll do a better job not to step on toes or offend reasonable people on these forums (or elsewhere), wherever and whenever possible.

    So, you won't find me rushing hand-over-foot to let all the Christians know that `The Teacher of Righteousness' was obviously the `Jesus' of relevance to their theology and worldview ... albeit a situation where even today's historians remain duped and distracted by a very clever smear-and-graft, bait-and-switch campaign. Nor shall I post on the Judaism forums that until the whole of Judaism accepts this Teacher (in any of Christ's many comings and presentations to this most Ancient of peoples on our planet), they shall remain spiritually adrift. Both assertions are true; both have their proper place, context, audience and appeal. Neither is polite if someone shoves it down your throat and insists, "SHHH! Don't talk, don't chew, just *swallow*!" :eek:
     
  17. Nick the Pilot

    Nick the Pilot Well-Known Member

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    Andrew,
     
    You said,
     
    "At times I think it's outrageous that my own LITTLE ego continues to get in the way - whether posting at Interfaith.org, discussing things between friends, or just going about my daily routine & interactions with folks (even vicariously, or indirectly)."

    --> The next step is to take a look at negative experiences you had in your childhood that caused you to be this way.
     
    "Nick [et al], you will find that I continue (at least for the present) to frame Theosophical teachings (from Ammonius Saccas and the earlier Platonics, forward) and related movements in as close to a contemporary Christian framework as possible."
     
    --> I, on the other hand, prefer to cloak my ideas in Buddhist terminology. I always say there are basically two kinds of people in this world, people who think like Christians and people who think like Buddhists, and I believe this has caused more trouble in the area of religion than just about anything else.
     
  18. Ecumenist

    Ecumenist New Member

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    In an earlier post, Ecumenist said:
    At times I think it's outrageous that my own LITTLE ego continues to get in the way - whether posting at Interfaith.org, discussing things between friends, or just going about my daily routine & interactions with folks (even vicariously, or indirectly).​

    Yes, or anywhere along the way, or in any of the past incarnations of which I have sufficient memory [to include in this sort of analysis] ... which is part of the reason why such things have immense *practical* value when we come to them naturally (as do all).
     
    Ecumenist also said:
    Nick [et al], you will find that I continue (at least for the present) to frame Theosophical teachings (from Ammonius Saccas and the earlier Platonics, forward) and related movements in as close to a contemporary Christian framework as possible.​
     
    I happen to quite agree with the ideas expressed in the letter from the Maha Chohan ... including the fact that Buddhists don't shed blood over this anthropomorphic (or other) nonsense cluttering up a belief system. Leave it to a bunch of zealots to mess things up 2200 years ago, and leave it to the wile of the Jesuits & Zionists to become the two greatest impediments, in terms of religious movements, to the Reappearance and new Advent of our Lord the Christ [Bodhisattva, World Teacher, Soshiosh/Saoshyant, Mosiach/Messiah, Imam Mahdhi, etc.] in the world today.

    My understanding, from a conversation many years ago, is that HPB in her present incarnation is very much a devout (truly pious, truly faithful) Christian, at heart. This, however, did not prevent her from renewing her vows and dedication to Tibetan Buddhism as a valid path toward Liberation (for all human beings, as one chooses to answer such a Call).

    She also explained why she has made this choice (similiar to the one she did two incarnations prior, as HPB). Her interest, as far as I might imagine it at present (having not spoken to her in 12 years or so), remains in doing ALL THAT SHE CAN to assist the Lord of the World ... this being her line of Hierarchical approach (1st Ray, via her own Master, M., the future Manu ... through Vaivasvata Manu, the current ... and so forth). As she might have phrased a similar commitment in the mid-nineteenth Century, the dedication is to the Brotherhood and its Cause, not to exoteric religions, which we know are made for man (rather than vice versa) as an approach to the life of Service and to Godhead.

    But in our intimate conversations, she made it clear to me that she remains a Christian at heart. While there have been recent discussions at Interfaith.org regarding what it means to be a true/legitimate follower of the Christ, I'm bothered by this kind of consideration, as it tends to overlook the necessary qualifier of just what standards are being used to even approach such a topic.

    Since there seem to be few who are able to remove these notions from relevant nuances and assumptions (such as the mistaken idea that one *must preach loudly of one's own exoteric leanings* in order to be a `real' Christian, or Buddhist, or Muslim) ... it just irks me to see this business going back & forth about the Mormons, or Unitarian Universalists, and devoted Ecumenists of other ilk.

    I thought it was humorous that someone here quickly seized upon the opportunity to distort what I said, and suggest that one can be, or believe, anything one wants and apparently still call him or herself Christian, according to my logic. Just goes to show how rigid is the thinking of some of these folks, and what an uphill battle the Soul has ... in order to show them to the Light. But of course, there's no communicating under these conditions, and I will gladly leave a fool chained to the floor of the Cave if he'd rather spit in my face or tell me that this `Sun' business is all just a hallucination and crazy chimera! :p
     
  19. Ecumenist

    Ecumenist New Member

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    Examining the history of the Christian religion, so influential in the West for the past 1.5 thousand years, with the wars and strife spawned in the name of a loving God ... plus torture tactics enacted by both Roman Catholic and Protestant Christianity alike, is enough to show that in many respects, this particular religion is a failure. However, if this were a safe and absolute position to hold, or blanket statement to make, the Tibetan Master would not have bothered to choose Alice Bailey (read her Unfinished Autobiography for more examples), or written such books as The Reappearance of the Christ, choosing that title, in His gift to Humanity (dating from 1875 and prior) upon becoming Asekha Adept.
     
  20. Ecumenist

    Ecumenist New Member

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    I would also point out the specific phrasing of The Great Invocation, this ancient (Atlantean) Prayer being given to Humanity WORD FOR WORD, according to D.K. - by the Christ Himself - as an updated PaterNoster, or `Lord's Prayer.'

    www.thegreatinvocation.org.uk

    Of course, from the exoteric standpoint, there has been so much written to assist the genuine student and aspirant, showing that in fact Buddhism and Christianity are complementary and completely compatible if one is not blinded by lower mind. Thich Nhat Hanh's book, Living Buddha, Living Christ is an example ... yet there are many others.

    Anyway, I do not think that Christianity is a failed religion, or that it is a disaster, much as the evil efforts of the Dark Ones has often led to the working out of unnecessary pain, ignorance, fear and adversity ... certainly despite the attempts of the Hierarchy to counteract such upon the physical plane. Rather, Christ brings reform 2100 years later even as the Buddha did earlier in the case of Hinduism, seeking to correct errors and to inspire anew those faithful followers who are always searching for the swiftest, most effective path of spiritual awakening, influence and Service.

    As G.K. Chesterton put it:
    "Christianity has not been tried and found wanting;
    it has been found difficult and not tried.​

    Ain't *that* the truth! :(

    Namaskar
     

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