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Has the social replaced the religious?

Discuss philosophical questions regarding theism (and atheism), and discuss religion as it relates to philosophy. This includes any philosophical discussions that happen to be about god, gods, or a 'higher power' or the belief of them. This also generally includes philosophical topics about organized or ritualistic mysticism or about organized, common or ritualistic beliefs in the existence of supernatural phenomenon.
GaryLouisSmith
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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 8th, 2019, 9:45 pm

Felix wrote:
July 8th, 2019, 8:41 pm
GaryLouisSmith: "Whoa, you certainly do have a definition of "political" that is different from mine. That makes conversation nearly impossible."

Actually, that quip was designed to elicit conversation.... I was thinking of politics in the general sense: "any activity concerned with the acquisition of power, gaining one's own ends," which would be what Chogyam Rinpoche called spiritual materialism. But who am I to question anyone's intentions?

Let me ask you, do you see no political maneuvering in the religious practices you mentioned? Do shamans ever play politics?
I just looked up Chogyam Rinpoche. Now I remember who he is. Naropa, Allen Ginsberg, and all the crazy stuff going on. I don't mind the crazy stuff. I rather like it and I think spirituality and sexuality and sensuality and even violence do go together. Allen Ginsberg and the other Beat Poets are among my favorites. As for the monks here in Kathmandu, there is sexuality here also. With both women and boys. Vajrayana is like that. Tantric Buddhism. This is the home of Tantra. It's fascinating. I myself am religious, but I am neither Buddhist nor Hindu. Any questions?

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by Felix » July 8th, 2019, 10:12 pm

Yes, tantric yoga, the left hand path, not for the faint of heart. But if you're gonna write a book about the pitfalls of spiritual materialism, you should probably practice it first, right?
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 8th, 2019, 10:29 pm

Felix wrote:
July 8th, 2019, 10:12 pm
Yes, tantric yoga, the left hand path, not for the faint of heart. But if you're gonna write a book about the pitfalls of spiritual materialism, you should probably practice it first, right?
I'm not going to write a book about that, but I do read quite a bit about the left handed path and talk to people. My book is more about gay spirituality and Logical Analysis as it came from England and Vienna a little over a hundred years ago. Have you looked at my website, which you can find over on the right side under my name when you click contact? Of course I also read about Hindu/Buddhist metaphysics, but hardly anybody wants to talk about that. I don't really deal in pitfalls. All of life is maybe a pitfall. I'm not sure what a pitfall is. The word makes me think of pit bull dogs.

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by Belindi » July 9th, 2019, 5:52 am

GaryLouisSmith , that lecture by Professor Goldsmith opened my my eyes! I think I must be a timid person! He did say he would have been punished for bringing up his children the way he makes art. May be you yourself would feel comfortable sitting beside Sartre on the front door step. I cannot see how any artist could possibly be completely non-derivative,no matter how primitive, no matter how fauve.

pitfalls: one thing is sure, they are all of them man made.

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by Greta » July 9th, 2019, 5:59 am

Belindi wrote:
July 7th, 2019, 6:32 am
Greta, do you recognise the difference between private and communal prayer?
Greatly so, Belinda.

The first is guaranteed to be sincere. The latter tends to have elements of display behaviour, and sometimes is seemingly entirely so.

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by chewybrian » July 9th, 2019, 8:56 am

GaryLouisSmith wrote:
July 8th, 2019, 6:48 pm
chewybrian wrote:
July 8th, 2019, 11:11 am


Image

I much prefer the Electric Light Orchestra, but to each their own.
Yes, I was thinking of the Village People when I wrote that. They are one of my favorite groups, The Electric Light Orchestra not so much. As for determinism, I believe that everything that happens in the world, down to the tiniest little happening is because it is the Will of God. If God predestines you to be a beer-drinking atheist then there is no getting around that. If not, then you will be something else. Humans have zero freedom.
Well, I don't want to derail the thread telling you about ELO (here's one I really like for a sample- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSwDLavjiNc ) or arguing about determinism. That wasn't a comment by me; it's just my signature line.

However, it is odd that you deny human freedom because of God, while most determinists deny both God and freedom. I find the freedom much harder to deny than God or determinism. The freedom is a self-evident element of all human experience. The others are both just theory. If the theory does not match reality, then it's likely we just don't have everything figured out yet. It's not just likely, but as certain as anything we could know (that we don't have it all figured out yet).

The mistake on both counts, if there is one, is relying too heavily on logic and forgetting that the logic always begins with an assumption. People get so proud of their logic that they lose track of the assuming. But, I don't have to assume that I can decide what to do; I can do it. Humans do have very little freedom, yet I believe they have some. If nothing else, we can decide how to react or feel about a reality that is largely out of our hands.
"If determinism holds, then past events have conspired to cause me to hold this view--it is out of my control. Either I am right about free will, or it is not my fault that I am wrong."

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 9th, 2019, 9:28 am

chewybrian wrote:
July 9th, 2019, 8:56 am


However, it is odd that you deny human freedom because of God, while most determinists deny both God and freedom. I find the freedom much harder to deny than God or determinism. The freedom is a self-evident element of all human experience. The others are both just theory. If the theory does not match reality, then it's likely we just don't have everything figured out yet. It's not just likely, but as certain as anything we could know (that we don't have it all figured out yet).

The mistake on both counts, if there is one, is relying too heavily on logic and forgetting that the logic always begins with an assumption. People get so proud of their logic that they lose track of the assuming. But, I don't have to assume that I can decide what to do; I can do it. Humans do have very little freedom, yet I believe they have some. If nothing else, we can decide how to react or feel about a reality that is largely out of our hands.
I am not a determinist if by that you mean that cause and effect is absolute. I don't believe in cause and effect if that means that the cause brings the effect into existence. One thing cannot bring another thing into existence. I follow David Hume in my thinking that cause and effect is no more that regular association. There is no causal nexus, only association. Pure chance has a much greater presence that cause and effect of any kind. Let's suppose you go out in the morning to dig in your garden and you find and some coins with a Spanish inscription on them. Do you really think science could predict such a find. Of course not. It was pure chance. I would say that 99.99% of what happens to us is pure chance. And once you get into such a thing you are close to the paranormal. And the gods. Determinism doesn't work with pure chance. And your so-called freewill is also not there. I would say there is no cause and effect nor a will either free or bound. There is only magic.

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by chewybrian » July 9th, 2019, 10:24 am

GaryLouisSmith wrote:
July 9th, 2019, 9:28 am
chewybrian wrote:
July 9th, 2019, 8:56 am


However, it is odd that you deny human freedom because of God, while most determinists deny both God and freedom. I find the freedom much harder to deny than God or determinism. The freedom is a self-evident element of all human experience. The others are both just theory. If the theory does not match reality, then it's likely we just don't have everything figured out yet. It's not just likely, but as certain as anything we could know (that we don't have it all figured out yet).

The mistake on both counts, if there is one, is relying too heavily on logic and forgetting that the logic always begins with an assumption. People get so proud of their logic that they lose track of the assuming. But, I don't have to assume that I can decide what to do; I can do it. Humans do have very little freedom, yet I believe they have some. If nothing else, we can decide how to react or feel about a reality that is largely out of our hands.
I am not a determinist if by that you mean that cause and effect is absolute.
I did not think you were a determinist. I just thought it was odd that you arrived at a similar conclusion by a different route. Most determinists would deny freedom and say that the causes controlled the effects, even with regard to living beings. Yet, you denied freedom because God decides how we will act before we act. However, many people invoke God as the source of freedom, as if he gave us something that nature could not, by their rules.

I'm not sure how you square these two statements:
As for determinism, I believe that everything that happens in the world, down to the tiniest little happening is because it is the Will of God.
I would say that 99.99% of what happens to us is pure chance.
If it is the will of God, then it is not pure chance, is it?
Let's suppose you go out in the morning to dig in your garden and you find and some coins with a Spanish inscription on them. Do you really think science could predict such a find. Of course not. It was pure chance. I would say that 99.99% of what happens to us is pure chance. And once you get into such a thing you are close to the paranormal. And the gods. Determinism doesn't work with pure chance. And your so-called freewill is also not there. I would say there is no cause and effect nor a will either free or bound. There is only magic.
I see elements of free will and cause and effect there. You decided to dig in the garden, and you found the coin based on the prior cause that someone dropped it there. The only problem is that some folks find it difficult to reconcile these things in theory (free will and cause and effect, that is). But, 'alive' is very different from 'not alive', which means, to me, that different rules apply. If there seems to be a contradiction, it only points out that we don't have things figured out correctly, but not that either of these things must be impossible. Rather, neither is impossible because they are already happening.
"If determinism holds, then past events have conspired to cause me to hold this view--it is out of my control. Either I am right about free will, or it is not my fault that I am wrong."

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 9th, 2019, 6:21 pm

chewybrian wrote:
July 9th, 2019, 10:24 am

I'm not sure how you square these two statements:
As for determinism, I believe that everything that happens in the world, down to the tiniest little happening is because it is the Will of God.
I would say that 99.99% of what happens to us is pure chance.
If it is the will of God, then it is not pure chance, is it?

Yes, you are absolutely right; there is a contradiction or paradox there. Nonetheless, whenever a sorcerer tries to divine the future or the past or the hidden, he or she will begin by introducing chaos into the system. For example he might throw stones onto a grid and to see where they land. He might open the entrails of an animal. He might observe the flight of birds. He might read tea leaves. Anything that is random. That randomness, that pure chance is most important. Or let’s say you notice surprising coincidences in your world. Maybe three times today a certain number appears out of the blue. Or something from your past appears. Or you have a premonition. You sort of read something into all that, but not really. It’s uncanny. And most of all, it is pure chance that all that happened and it is easily dismissed as nothing. Now you are in the paranormal. Pure chance has revealed something … but what?

To say something was the will of God is to say that you are in the uncanny. Pure chance has revealed … what? Freud had a lot to say about all this. https://web.mit.edu/allanmc/www/freud1.pdf

As you can see, none of that has diminished the irrationality of the contradiction between pure chance and the will of God. It has only made the feeling of something being out of joint more obvious. Still, that is the way these things work. You just have to deal with it. Your desire for rationality will have to wait.

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 10th, 2019, 2:38 am

Belindi wrote:
July 9th, 2019, 5:52 am

be completely non-derivative,no matter how primitive, no matter how fauve.
These words should be hung up in a gallery -------------------------- that lecture by Professor Goldsmith opened my my eyes! I think I must be a timid person! He did say he would have been punished for bringing up his children the way he makes art. May be you yourself would feel comfortable sitting beside Sartre on the front door step. I cannot see how any artist could possibly be completely non-derivative,no matter how primitive, no matter how fauve. --------------------------


Yes, Yes, Yes, you yourself are becoming a true disciple of conceptual poetry, a follower of Goldsmith, a non-derivative person. You are becoming a copy machine. A neural processor. A soulless performer.

Dada Dada Dada Dada Dada Dada Dada Dada

Are you a pitfall? A pratfall. A pit bull. A spit ball. An unreflexive yoga contortionist. With sincere words. For unnerds.

Ah Sartre, a sexual idiot. Very entertaining. The guy who brought us the Iranian Revolution, Pol Pot and the killing fields and Hell as other people. Sure I would sit beside him. I would ask him about Jean Genet. I would ask him for a second time if flowers have consciousness.

Is Conceptual Poetry a sign of the End Times? Will Jesus return soon? Do you think Jerad Kuchner is sexy? And what about Truth?

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 10th, 2019, 3:31 am

Belindi wrote:
July 9th, 2019, 5:52 am

pitfalls: one thing is sure, they are all of them man made.
Against Expression

I'm sure you will enjoy this anthology of conceptual writing - https://monoskop.org/images/3/3c/Dworki ... riting.pdf

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by Felix » July 10th, 2019, 1:33 pm

GaryLouisSmith: Nonetheless, whenever a sorcerer tries to divine the future or the past or the hidden, he or she will begin by introducing chaos into the system. For example he might throw stones onto a grid and to see where they land. He might open the entrails of an animal. He might observe the flight of birds. He might read tea leaves. Anything that is random. That randomness, that pure chance is most important.
It's not about randomness. Rune stones, yarrow sticks, tarot cards, whatever, are just tricks to focus attention. I have practiced dowsing and peered through the metaphysical haze.

And Freud was too obsessed with sex and the other drives of the ego (as you seem to be) to go beyond it into the transpersonal and paranormal, that was the terrain that Jung explored when he parted ways with Freud.
"We do not see things as they are; we see things as we are." - Anaïs Nin

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by Belindi » July 10th, 2019, 1:59 pm

When I was dowsing I did it like Felix says. I excluded my own ego by the method of thinking about what my divining rods were doing and getting into an inconsequential mood.. All divination only works when ego is laid aside for the time being.When you know that the game is chaotic this helps you to be more playful and less concerned with ego.

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by GaryLouisSmith » July 10th, 2019, 5:55 pm

Felix wrote:
July 10th, 2019, 1:33 pm

And Freud was too obsessed with sex and the other drives of the ego (as you seem to be)
Yes, I am obsessed with sex, possessed, nuts and queer for sex. I am mad. I write. Come Lord Jesus.

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Re: Has the social replaced the religious?

Post by Greta » July 10th, 2019, 7:32 pm

GLS, I am all for madness and partake in it myself, but I'm wondering if the level of self focus you are displaying is reflective of how you live and think. Is driving-the-Gary-bus the overriding project at this time of your life?

What are your thoughts about those things that are not Gary? Do you see the sacred or profane, or to what extent?

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