Revelation

Discussion in 'Belief and Spirituality' started by CobblersApprentice, Jul 14, 2019.

  1. What is "revelation"? Of the divine or "God"?

    In a text? In a particular text. In a particular interpretation of a particular text?

    As I have implied in several posts, Reality is "revelation" and I do not recognise any particular text as being either pre-eminent or definitive.

    But what do others think?
     
  2. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    The revealed texts point out certain things about reality, which may be worth paying attention to.
     
  3. Yes, of course. I think we both seem very familiar with the various Scriptures of the world. Where would I be without them? Who knows.

    Speaking of "the quest for direct and pure experience on a metaphysical level" Thomas Merton said of some religions (he cites Buddhism as one) that the philosophical/religious framework can more easily be discarded, having a built in "ejector" (his word)

    It seems often the text sucks people in like a black hole.
     
  4. stranger

    stranger lost in the night

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    This is what I look for to illumine the path, little by little, revelation. To me a text is just worthless scribblings without revelation to breath life into it. Be it God or Other Power, it has to come from there to have value. I noticed you capitalized Reality, I think you must mean the sacred and permanent which exists alongside the illusory? Catching a glimpse of it being revelation?
     
  5. Being non-theist, I tend to use Reality-as-is. Really, I tend to think theism and non-theism come together in some sort of "incomprehensibility". It is complex, but in Eckhart I hear expressions of the non-theistic Dharma.

    I certainly think that, as unique human beings, there is "revelation" tailored (as it were) to us, personally, as unique seekers. Obviously there are dangers to this. Yet the danger of being sucked in by over authoritarian voices, orthodoxies, and the like seems greater - it would seem so, from history and looking around.
     
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  6. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    It can be a strategy of avoidance or procrastination, to get stuck at text study. One learns to know everything about Reality/the Law/the Dharma/God, rather than engaging directly.

    So how to distinguish true revelation from just any old text?
     
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  7. As I see it, yes, most of those who get stuck at text level do THINK that they know everything about Reality/the Law/the Dharma/God.
     
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  8. A Cup Of Tea

    A Cup Of Tea An ordinary cup of tea

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    I question this. I don't think you can measure and compare these things in a meaningful way. I think aspects of freedom/security have different degrees of impact on people, everything else is just opinion.
     
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  9. You could well be right. I had just posted something elsewhere about the "mystery" of how the truth of Love is spread, and of course we ourselves need the message. Perhaps just my lifelong fear of authority figures caused me to make such a judgement.
     
  10. stranger

    stranger lost in the night

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    I think revelation can go from obvious and overt to almost imperceptible. So I might study a text for a long while but it would have little meaning for me until it becomes "real" through revelation. A month from now I might have advanced from where I am now, without even knowing how. Scriptures I've known for years might assume a deeper meaning than they had before. Some revelation is occurring, perhaps even beneath the concsious level. The scriptures are more alive, I am more alive.

    Conversely, if I think of study and learning completely without revelation, for instance, I might end up with just an intellectually compiled code of ethics or a law book to live by, nothing really life-giving. To me, any text, even from my own tradition, is just words without revelation. Study is good, but without at least a little revelation the learning has no life. Study, time, experience, all play a part, but revelation, even if it's just a mild nudge in the heart toward something, is very important. This is just my pov though, Cino, and I often have to fight the tendency to think in simple extremes.
     
  11. It's difficult to put these things into words. I tend to stumble along on the path of "no-calculation", trying not to be over introspective of whether "progress" is being made. Without turning this into a confessional (!) I try to see, if anything, faults. They are met with non-judgemental compassion (of Amida, Reality-as-is) That's it, apart from "Thank you, thank you, thank you."

    Having said that, I seem to have a little store-room of various quotes from diverse sources. These often pop back into my mind and I recognise that while some have remained constant (even inspirational) others have evolved and morphed, seeing new things in them.

    It seems my mentors are everywhere.

    One example of a quote, a Bible verse from St Mark, "for the earth brings forth fruits of itself." which has stayed constant. Another, "Love has no why" (Meister Eckhart) which evolves and morphs the more I dip into Dogen.
     
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  12. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Active Member

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    This is the crux of the matter..
    A combination of the text's source, and its content.
     
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  13. stranger

    stranger lost in the night

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    If I turned a post into a confessional, it might not ever end! :) Meeting faults with non-judgemental compassion, I don't know of anyone who wouldn't want to be treated that way. It creates freedom, gives room to make mistakes, to question, to learn. I think it's a good thing for everyone.

    You do have an excellent storehouse of quotes. Mentors are indeed abundant here. I only have to fight back a little resistance on my part toward "new" things (things I haven't heard before), perhaps a little cognitive dissonance, and then there I am willing to learn. Something well worth that temporary inner fight.

    I also have a little trouble with authority figures, going back to my fundamentalist days, I think. But my worst wounding by far was my school days (happened before my church days). Having failed miserably there, I somehow wound up with a fear of smart people! I guess it goes back to the feeling of being left behind by my peers, of being less-than. Ok enough confession for now. Since you've been here, I have also dabbled in Dogen. Not sure what will come of it, but thankful for the opportunity.
     
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  14. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    You describe revelation as occurring when each reader opens the text, not just when the prophet received the text through revelation?

    Nice, I like that.

    But a text that speaks to someone might be dead to someone else?
     
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  15. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    What makes a source revelatory?

    What makes the content revelatory?
     
  16. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Active Member

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    They are 2 different issues.
    Firstly, does the text claim to be revealing Divine revelation, or would that be mankind?
    Does the text make logical sense?

    ..and then can we reasonably determine the source as being authentic? i.e. where did it come from :)
     
  17. Cino

    Cino Big Love! (Atheist mystic)

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    Let's take Crowley's "Book of the Law", then. It claims divine revelation, and people have been able to make logical sense of it. And Crowley's existence is well-documented.

    Plus, I think neither one of us is a religious Thelemite, so we can both relate to it without having a personal stake in the game.

    So, what's your take on this revelation for the "Aeon of Horus"?
     
  18. muhammad_isa

    muhammad_isa Active Member

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    No .. let's not :)
    There are 1000's of examples like this that you could ask me to discuss if you so desired..
    "Truth is distinct from falsehood"

    .. If you are claiming Crowley's Qabalah is an authentic Divine revelation, I am then willing to discuss it with you.
     
  19. My quotes come from weakness. When first on forums I was hesitant, even timid, in offering opinions, so the quote of another (an authority figure!) was always handy. Now a little more courageous, I have retained the habit.

    Speaking of quotes, another favorite, this from A A Milne, creator of Winnie the Pooh:-

    "A quotation is a handy thing to have about, saving one the trouble of thinking for oneself, always a laborious business."

    Well, be that as it may, I stumble on.

    Another quote from Chuang Tzu (as translated by Thomas Merton) is another one that I often ponder upon, not really knowing what it is about.

    When a hideous man becomes a father
    And a son is born to him
    In the middle of the night
    He trembles and lights a lamp
    And runs to look in anguish
    On that child's face
    To see whom he resembles

    Being a Pure Lander of faith and no-calculation, I see these words as pointing to that attitude of mind that seeks attainment, seeking progress on the path, always looking for improvement, looking for the pass-mark that He Who Judges All will give.......or not! A life of constant introspection, of works, not faith/trust.

    Maybe others will see another meaning entirely? But that, in part, is what this particular thread is about.

    Speaking of Dogen, I have found "Eihei Dogen:Mystical Realist" by Hee-Jim Kim invaluable. Now on my second read through. But I have to read it slowly. For me, now, it inter-relates with much else.
     
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  20. Arif Ghamiq

    Arif Ghamiq Active Member

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    I think the Temple of Set lays claim to a revelation as well through Michael Aquino
     

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