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  1. Daoist associations?

    I’m sorry I did that, Taomeow. For what it’s worth I think you’re brilliant.
  2. Daoist associations?

    For the simple reason that “shaman” is not a role you chose. It was chosen for you, by the spirits, often with a lot of suffering involved. Your version of Enkidu sounds a bit like a monk, sure, but of course you are leaving out some important details of his story. Look, if you think monasticism is stupid, repressive, whatever, fine. Some important people in your lineage thought otherwise.
  3. Oh yeah it’s an utter cesspool. It’s one thing to be lonely, shy, etc and completely another to gravitate toward a depraved, vicious misogynist ideology often dovetailing with fascism and other forms of reaction.
  4. Daoist associations?

    Not a valid analogy. The collective monastic system developed quite organically from the phenomenon of individual desert hermits, as more aspiring hermits drew near to recognized elders for guidance. At first the monks would remain living apart, only gathering on rare occasions for advice or church services- this is how the skete form of monasticism developed. Later some monks began living together more permanently, necessitating a common rule to maintain harmony and peace- this is the lavra or coenobium. In all cases though the monks were in the desert for the same reason- secluding themselves from “the world” to devote themselves to prayer and asceticism, so it’s not like the lavra was a deviation from the prior ascetic practice. To this day, in both Orthodox and Catholic Churches monasticism exists in all three forms- hermits, sketes, lavras. The hermits are still called monks. In Georgia today there is a famous monk living by himself in a hut on a mountain pillar- he is still called a monk. Many towns in the Russian frontier developed this way- a hermit would head out into the forest; later on someone would find out about him, some other aspiring monks followed. Eventually a monastery developed. Then pilgrims would follow, and merchants would follow the pilgrims, and soon a town came into being. Then some monks, to get away from the bustle, would strike out on their own as hermits, further into the forest, and the process would begin again. It’s very clear that the Quanzhen masters established monasticism almost immediately. Whether you think they were mistaken in doing so is another matter.
  5. The key difference is waiting for the third date before talking about the Annunaki.
  6. Daoist associations?

    Again, monk is from “Monachos,” solitary. The first people to be called monks were guys like Paul of Thebes and Antony the Great. Likewise the word “hermit” comes from these same people, referring to the Egyptian desert they lived in. They lived in huts and caves alone and had no monasteries or rules except whatever ascetic regimen they decided for themselves. Hermits are the first monks. Wang Chongyang alone in his hut is a solitary, a monachos, a monk. For early Quanzhen cultivating in the world was a dead end. If they thought otherwise they wouldn’t insist so strongly on breaking up families. They referred to people still in the world as “walking corpses” and things like that. They were not playing around. I’ll wait for Walker to chime back in before saying more.
  7. Daoist associations?

    Again, hermitage is just the most basic kind of monasticism. Any monasticism is normally entered voluntarily- if you don't like the rule of a particular monastery, you don't have to join. Situations where people are forced into monasteries for political or economic reasons should be considered a deformation of the practice and not a defining feature, even if it was alarmingly common in certain eras. If you wanted to be Wang Chongyang's core disciple, you had to abandon family and become celibate. The Quanzhen masters did open the teachings up to laypeople but they very clearly regarded renunciation of family life as essential to real advancement. So you have stories of Quanzhen disciples doing things like walling themselves inside caves and ignoring the pleas of their wives or children outside.
  8. Daoist associations?

    The root of monasticism is in hermits, whether they lived in caves, huts,, etc. So the Greek word monachos= solitary, whence we get "monk." The early Christian monks were solitary ascetics like St Anthony the Great who lived in caves or, sometimes, huts (e.g. St John the Hut-Dweller). As they acquired disciples they began to order a more common life which eventually developed into the sketes and coenobia that we now call monasteries. But monasticism at its core isn't defined by these institutions, so Wang Chongyang living by himself in a tomb or a hut is practicing a kind of monasticism. Sun Bu-er and Ma Yu were indeed a married couple, but they were not accepted as a married couple. Rather Ma Yu abandoned Sun Bu-er who later joined him but they were thenceforth celibate. The early Quanzhen masters were adamant that you had to abandon your family if you really wanted to cultivate. It was definitely a monastic movement.
  9. If your contention is that bad writers don’t attract ladies I have news for you about bestseller lists.
  10. Indeed, I am terrified of learning that this forum is loaded with iron-thewed barbarians, the mere whiff of their sweaty, oily chests enough to draw away any of my potential female companions as a magnet draws iron shavings.
  11. What do you think a poll of a handful of men on a small Daoist Internet forum will prove or accomplish?
  12. It's a fact, then. In the grim darkness of this post-feminist world, 4 out of 5 men are doomed to wander, sexless and alone, with naught but the hardhearted hyenas on internet forums to give ear to their woes. Meanwhile 1 in 5 live as gods upon the earth, smiting incels with their savage blades as willing females gather at their feet.
  13. So among men under 35, 80% are single whereas the remaining 20% are studs running around with 4 or 5 girlfriends apiece, like some old Conan paperback cover, is that your contention?
  14. Theosis: Becoming Like God

    Christian theology has plenty of ambiguity here. What exactly is the character of the resurrected bodies? What does Paul mean when he says "it is sown a psychical body, it is raised a spiritual body" (the theologian David Bentley Hart does a great job talking about the "psychical" and "spiritual" distinction in ancient Christianity here)? While we will live in resurrected bodies they are quite different from the "psychical" bodies we have now. So a dichotomy between "ascending to heaven" and "live eternally in a body" is not so clear in fact. This is both a lazy and ignorant summation of Christian theology. The "how many angels" trope is a modern caricature of scholasticism and has little relation to what Christian theologians actually did. As for theosis itself, it was far from one idle speculation among many, but a central part of the patristic Christian message, as found in Athanasius, the Cappadocian Fathers, Maximus the Confessor, and the whole theology of the incarnation of Christ. In the debates around the dogmas of Christ, the question of the deification of man is central. It is embedded, implicitly or explicitly, in the hymnography of the Byzantine Church and even shows up in popular modern hymns in the West by Charles Wesley and others. The rest of your remarks are so ignorant as to be not even worth responding to. I would even say that a distinct "Abrahamic" category of religion wasn't really relevant in the 1st century; that the Judaism out of which Christianity emerged was pretty Hellenized to begin with and Christianity began as a Hellenistic religion. When Paul talks about hierarchies of angelic rulers (archons) he is expressing a cosmology shared by both Jewish and pagan thinkers of his era. What strikes me about the Protestant Reformers, especially the Calvin-Zwingli axis, is that in their attempt to purify Christianity they leaned very hard on a very dour interpretation of Plato and Aristotle (combined, of course, with the worst aspects of Augustine). Some of their work, like Zwingli's sermon "On Providence", seem hardly Christian at all and more like a carcass of Platonism with all the fun and humor drained from it.