Anyone Else Agnostic?

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manored
 
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2009 02:18 pm
@Fido,
Fido;112183 wrote:
Mind ought to be easy...It takes one to know one...
Can a eye look into its own back? Not winhout a set of mirrors, I tell you! =)

But now, he also has a set of mirrors, they are part of him, he has to see their back too... but, for that, he needs more mirrors...
 
Fido
 
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2009 07:10 pm
@TurboLung,
Can the mind look at the night without fright???
 
jeeprs
 
Reply Fri 18 Dec, 2009 11:13 pm
@TurboLung,
actually, one liners aside, not that I don't enjoy them, the thought occurs to me that we do a lot of 'meta-thinking' nowadays, without actually realising that is what we are doing.

Meta-thinking: thinking about thought. Not only thought, but also wondering about 'ultimates', 'grounds', and 'being'. Many people ask, on the forum, 'what is logic'? or 'What is God'. And so on.

Now the thought occurs to me that sometime in the past, and probably not so long ago, nobody would have asked those questions, or thought like that. The thought simply would not have occured. It is a change in consciousness.

It is good to question and to wonder, but 'meta-thinking' is often not useful. (a) because we don't realise that we are doing that, so we kind of go around in a large circle and end up nowhere and (b) because we don't see how impossible it is (although this thread is picking up on that theme.

There are things beyond thought. OK we will immediately think about that. Hmm, beyond thought. What does that mean? What is he thinking? OK that was a very small circle, but it illustrates the point nicely.

So do I have a point? I think, in regards to the OP, that 'agnostic' is actually a placeholder of sorts for a place beyond which we can't really think. it is there as a remnant echo in our consciousness that was once occupied by the sign that read 'God'. But now we're not so sure, it is not a given, and there are many reasons to think that God is no longer there. So a lot of what we do is kind of peer into the abyss. Hmmm I wonder.

Now, again, there is nothing wrong with any of it. But it is useful to realise that this is what we are doing, and the provisional nature of anything we think we see there.

Maybe i am saying I'm agnostic, in a very long winded way.

Just a thought....
 
manored
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 11:13 am
@jeeprs,
Fido;112517 wrote:
Can the mind look at the night without fright???
Yes, I think so.

jeeprs;112568 wrote:

It is good to question and to wonder, but 'meta-thinking' is often not useful. (a) because we don't realise that we are doing that, so we kind of go around in a large circle and end up nowhere and (b) because we don't see how impossible it is (although this thread is picking up on that theme.
I dont think we can really avoid, when we start meta-thinking that means we reconized and solved problems all the way up to the physical and psychologic barriers that prevent us from knowing further... what else can we do other than slam uselessly against then? Oh... think about something else =)
 
Fido
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 11:39 am
@manored,
manored;112669 wrote:
Yes, I think so.



Either you ain't human, or you haven't tried... The thing is archetypical...Monkeys used to fall from trees, and now angels fly in the sky and we fear the curb....Never deny your instincts and you will know what it means to be human...We are more animal than spirit...
 
TickTockMan
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 03:43 pm
@Fido,
Fido;112681 wrote:
Never deny your instincts and you will know what it means to be human...We are more animal than spirit...


Agreed. But why then do we assign ourselves such a special place in the universe, and why do some seek the spiritual with such such single-minded purpose?
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 04:09 pm
@TickTockMan,
TickTockMan;112737 wrote:
Agreed. But why then do we assign ourselves such a special place in the universe, and why do some seek the spiritual with such such single-minded purpose?


I think we could call spirit the cutting edge of the animal. Spirit/animal is a false dichotomy, just as mind/body is somehow false dichotomy (Yet both are useful and to that degree "true") What if the god instinct is related to chimpanzees and their alpha males, etc.? What if wolves have feelings that humans would call religious when they howl at the moon.

I respond to myth and religious art. There's a tingle and a jingle. And yet I don't mistake it for an object in the sky. I say let's tie Darwin and Campell/Jung together.

---------- Post added 12-19-2009 at 05:12 PM ----------

jeeprs;112568 wrote:
at is what we are doing.

Meta-thinking: thinking about thought. Not only thought, but also wondering about 'ultimates', 'grounds', and 'being'. Many people ask, on the forum, 'what is logic'? or 'What is God'. And so on.


I think meta-thinking is a sort of negative theology. It shows man that his reason is founded upon the sand, however useful. I don't see how philosophy as criticism can turn its back on meta-thinking. Linguistic philosophy is a first philosophy, if philosophy is criticism.

I will say that transcendent experience is a finer goal than mere criticism, but for me the two are related. Criticism(meta-thought) is a machete that hacks down our blinding prejudices, our ideas that serves as idols.

People are wired differently. I respect your opinion. I just had to stick up for meta-thought.

---------- Post added 12-19-2009 at 05:13 PM ----------

Fido;112517 wrote:
Can the mind look at the night without fright???

I don't think it can. There's a piece of the night that most of us forget as quickly as possible.
 
TickTockMan
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 05:04 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;112747 wrote:
There's a piece of the night that most of us forget as quickly as possible.


"Oh, Mother Night! Fold your dark arms about me. Protect me in your black embrace. I sit alone, an impotent exile, whilst this form, this presence, returns to torment me!

I require the solace of the shadows and the dark of the night. Sunshine is my destroyer!
" - Lord Darkness, from the movie Legend.

The night is good. That's where all the answers are. Why fear it, or look away?
 
Fido
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 05:21 pm
@TickTockMan,
TickTockMan;112737 wrote:
Agreed. But why then do we assign ourselves such a special place in the universe, and why do some seek the spiritual with such such single-minded purpose?

Our spirituality is our life... What is physical often drives us to our deaths...The pit in your stomach today might be the gnawing pain of tomorrow...The one might drive you out in danger to find food; but how that has often happened with us, with humanity, is that the human able to conceive of reality abstractly, which is to say: Spiritually, could plan, predict, and adapt to his future... When we live, we live in the moment and in emotions... We float or fly from sensation to senation unless we have not also grappled with reality to ensure our existence...Clearly, being able to imagine unhappiness, not only as an abstraction but as an emotional sensation has spured us on... So it is with death itself, that in imagining death as an abstraction, many have evaded death as a reality...The spiritual man is the material man imagined...It is consciousness, but that does not make all that we imagine out of our needs real any more than an illusion of water is real to the thirsty man... It is only as real as it will quench his thirst... Human beings have a thirst for what the spirits offer: Power and immortality... What we are lucky to get is strength and foresight enough to get into tomorrow alive...

I think that the general search for spiritual fulfilment is a sign of decadence...It is how the Roman Empire ended up Christian...As life becomes less certain we crave a certain eternity... We do not want to be responsible, and religion is a means of evading responsibility...Your life and leasure to contemplate God might be built on making enemies of the many out of whose mouth's you live, and if you can sit in church and pray for your enemies who only hate you because you have denied them life and the stuff of life, then you can go home a feel good about yourself...But it is decadent...If you do not have to pick up your own damned cross to be a Christian, then none of us are going to get anywhere...Think of all the missionaries in all the world handing out the good book and medicine and stealing everyones well being... There is patriotism in our churches, and heaven is a place we intend to be with flags flying... So why are we spiritual??? Why do we seek with our faiths the power of a universe???...

No one can hide from any person what their true character is...They know if they are large or small, generous, or petty...Social forms exist for a social purpose...In the example of religion, they exist to make the individual feel good, because those people know what they are...They know if they hate life, and they know if they hate humanity, and they know if they are living off others without caring for them, or knowing their condition, in will full ignorance that only illness could justify...There is not much medicne in church, but much of anodine...They may as well break into song and dance because they are celebrating the misery of mankind...

---------- Post added 12-19-2009 at 06:25 PM ----------

What do you feel when you turn out the lights???

I can't tell you, but I know it's mine...
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 05:28 pm
@TickTockMan,
TickTockMan;112767 wrote:


The night is good. That's where all the answers are. Why fear it, or look away?


It just depends on what a person wants to symbolize by "Night." One could describe insanity as a night. Saint John of the Cross talks of a "dark night of the soul." So it depends if lights symbolizes the good kind of consciousness.

For me the night to be feared is tied up with death camps and torture, all that lies in the basement of the human soul.

I've got nothing against the moon. I like to walk the streets at night. I've been staying up all night for weeks.

---------- Post added 12-19-2009 at 06:35 PM ----------

Fido;112777 wrote:
Human beings have a thirst for what the spirits offer: Power and immortality... What we are lucky to get is strength and foresight enough to get into tomorrow alive...


This is quite true. Still, are democracy and the Christian concept of the individual related? Kojeve on Hegel makes a strong point in this direction. At some point the idea that man as person has value, irregardless of his social position. Isn't this behind the abolition of slavery and the French Revolution? Was it tied to an oppressive system? Absolutely. So they wrecked the churches in France. But they did it in the name of freedom and equality, which is a large part of our Christian heritage. To say that the kingdom of God is within the individual is to suggest that the individual has an innate value.
Primitive idolatry is bad, and keeps a society down. Plenty of slave-owners were deacons, I'm sure. But they were hypocrites. Most religions have a pure core of decency and point to love. Also they criticize greed and hatred. I just want to put the other side of religion into the equation. You've seen how godless Marxism went down in practice.
 
Fido
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 05:49 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;112782 wrote:
It just depends on what a person wants to symbolize by "Night." One could describe insanity as a night. Saint John of the Cross talks of a "dark night of the soul." So it depends if lights symbolizes the good kind of consciousness.

For me the night to be feared is tied up with death camps and torture, all that lies in the basement of the human soul.

I've got nothing against the moon. I like to walk the streets at night. I've been staying up all night for weeks.

---------- Post added 12-19-2009 at 06:35 PM ----------



This is quite true. Still, are democracy and the Christian concept of the individual related? Kojeve on Hegel makes a strong point in this direction. At some point the idea that man as person has value, irregardless of his social position. Isn't this behind the abolition of slavery and the French Revolution? Was it tied to an oppressive system? Absolutely. So they wrecked the churches in France. But they did it in the name of freedom and equality, which is a large part of our Christian heritage. To say that the kingdom of God is within the individual is to suggest that the individual has an innate value.
Primitive idolatry is bad, and keeps a society down. Plenty of slave-owners were deacons, I'm sure. But they were hypocrites. Most religions have a pure core of decency and point to love. Also they criticize greed and hatred. I just want to put the other side of religion into the equation. You've seen how godless Marxism went down in practice.

Irregardless is a double negative, but you hear so many people use the word who should know better that you have to wonder how they got there...
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 05:52 pm
@Fido,
Fido;112795 wrote:
Irregardless is a double negative, but you hear so many people use the word who should know better that you have to wonder how they got there...


You're right. I can't believe I used that word. Oh well. I'm a son of the working class. The onliest education I ever had wuz used books and this lie-berry card.:sarcastic:
 
Fido
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 06:18 pm
@TurboLung,
Well; I am a worker; but that is one the Jews taught me....My wife's family...I don't think they had much respect for me...If you work for a living you must have something wrong with your head....One of them handed me Thus spoke, by Nietzsche..I was a born philosopher....I was born with a why, instead of cry...My parents said My, My; what a thing to hear him cry..All day: why why why until even the dog had enough; why is the floor so rough??? Why is the sky so high??? No one knows why I was born with why instead of a cry... Oh my.. Why why why...Oh why???
I just wrote that for your enjoyment...No; for mine... I'm trying to avoid shoveling the snow...
 
TickTockMan
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 06:33 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;112782 wrote:
It just depends on what a person wants to symbolize by "Night." One could describe insanity as a night. Saint John of the Cross talks of a "dark night of the soul." So it depends if lights symbolizes the good kind of consciousness.


I think that the real darkness, and the real light transcend any form of symbolism at all, and conceits like "good" and "bad" become irrelevant. They just are. Kind of like descriptions of the Tao . . . "the Tao which can be named . . . yadda yadda yadda." You know how that one goes.

Darkness and light are places which hold answers, and are the birthplace of the mythologies which, as Campbell notes, "teach us how to live." Some go into these places and return with lessons clenched between their teeth which they are compelled to share. Many do so through art (i.e. Blake, Alex Grey, etc.).
Others do not make it back intact, and the lessons they bring back are distorted, and we wind up with men like Manson, Koresh, and Jones as messiahs, as well as the monsters behind the death camps you fear . . .

I think it is false to equate darkness with evil and light with goodness. They are symbolized as such, but I think this is a mistake.

-----------
". . . and tell her, there's a darkness on the edge of town." - Bruce Springsteen.
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Sat 19 Dec, 2009 06:50 pm
@TickTockMan,
TickTockMan;112816 wrote:

I think it is false to equate darkness with evil and light with goodness. They are symbolized as such, but I think this is a mistake.

-----------
". . . and tell her, there's a darkness on the edge of town." - Bruce Springsteen.


I respect your point. I suppose humans are limited as to what they can use to hint at the ineffable. Artists are forced to use what is to point at the uncreated. I suppose the important thing is not to mistake the finger that points at the moon for the moon itself. I sometimes think spiritual progress is just getting rid of idols, tossing out false gods. And if what most people call god is a false god, toss that out too. For me, it's all inside us. All the gods and demons of mythology are created by man for human reasons. And yeah, Manson and Company are good examples of the dark side of the holy. There's a charisma and power in mystical symbols. It really is like magic except it works purely through faith and seduction. Faith doesnt move mountains directly but sets people to work moving mountains, or killing pregnant women, or even burning churchs. Seems like Robespierre had his own sort of faith. Marx seems faithful indeed, writing the blueprint of Utopia. Man and his symbols and the emotions these symbols cause. Intellectuals have faith in "reason." I don't mean the justified trust in its usefulness but rather that tingle that makes us cling to a word. It clicks with us. I see man as the very same animal as always. He's just switched his idols a bit. It seems like a good man is one who has harmonized his energies, knows how to get along, enjoy life. Knows how to hold the inner chaos in a decent and happy order.
 
manored
 
Reply Sun 20 Dec, 2009 12:02 pm
@Fido,
Fido;112681 wrote:
Either you ain't human, or you haven't tried... The thing is archetypical...Monkeys used to fall from trees, and now angels fly in the sky and we fear the curb....Never deny your instincts and you will know what it means to be human...We are more animal than spirit...
I wont be human forever. After all I only have, what, being very optimistic, about 110 years to live, after wich I die, and what I will be after death? Not human, I think.
 
TickTockMan
 
Reply Tue 22 Dec, 2009 07:07 pm
@Reconstructo,
Reconstructo;112821 wrote:
It seems like a good man is one who has harmonized his energies, knows how to get along, enjoy life. Knows how to hold the inner chaos in a decent and happy order.


This is easy to do. Just realize that some day you will be dead.
Don't think of it in the abstract. Know it. This is one of the keys
to living without fear. When you live without fear, you find perspective,
when you find perspective, chaos can be embraced as easily as calm,
and questions of theology become irrelevant musings of the primate mind.

I could be wrong though.

As Bill Hicks said, "It's just a ride."
 
Reconstructo
 
Reply Tue 22 Dec, 2009 08:33 pm
@TickTockMan,
TickTockMan;113633 wrote:
This is easy to do. Just realize that some day you will be dead.
Don't think of it in the abstract. Know it. This is one of the keys
to living without fear. When you live without fear, you find perspective,
when you find perspective, chaos can be embraced as easily as calm,
and questions of theology become irrelevant musings of the primate mind.

I could be wrong though.

As Bill Hicks said, "It's just a ride."


This is good advice. I have to say that I doubt whether we can live completely without fear. If our loved ones are in danger, can we accept this without fear? Or a bear attacks us...

I think you mean the useless needless abstract fear that many people waste their time on. I agree with you on this. In some ways, death is a comfort, for it erases all of our problems and mistakes. Assuming there's no afterlife, which is what I assume.
Some of theology is quite a pleasure. I enjoy it like art. Especially, so far, Nicolas Cusanus. A polygon with an infinite number of sides is a circle. The polygon is man's mind. The circle is God. This seems like proto-calculus used as theology. I guess I think that for some folks, "God" is a name for whatever is most exciting and sublime. Yes, it can be described as irrelevant, but what isn't irrelevant to an ape that must die? Mortality makes all value temporary. When I stopped believing in God, I moved into a sphere where nothing was truth, for all would die with me in any case.Laughing
 
Fido
 
Reply Tue 22 Dec, 2009 10:56 pm
@manored,
manored;113037 wrote:
I wont be human forever. After all I only have, what, being very optimistic, about 110 years to live, after wich I die, and what I will be after death? Not human, I think.

Not human after??? No problem... Think of how many people are more human at the moment of their birth than ever after... Some people never get there, and they think they are doing a public service hating, harrassing, humilating, and otherwise destroying those who take humanity as the goal...
 
manored
 
Reply Wed 23 Dec, 2009 11:58 am
@Fido,
Fido;113659 wrote:
Not human after??? No problem... Think of how many people are more human at the moment of their birth than ever after... Some people never get there, and they think they are doing a public service hating, harrassing, humilating, and otherwise destroying those who take humanity as the goal...
Well being human is not just a sea of roses, is it? =)

I dont like the concept of "humanity" as something good, because humans arent capable of only more good than animals, we are also capable of more evil. At least, I never heard of a lion killing or hunting out of sadism, or anything like that.

Reconstructo;113642 wrote:
This is good advice. I have to say that I doubt whether we can live completely without fear. If our loved ones are in danger, can we accept this without fear? Or a bear attacks us...
We cant live completly winhout fear, because our instincs wont less us, but if you logically prove yourself there is no reason to fell fear, it will be easier to overcome fear.
 
 

 
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