Marblehead

Mair 19:1

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, wandelaar said:

I could imagine a world without physical objects,

Well, as long as we are imagining, I'll jump in. Like Marbles, I have little or no contact ... that I am aware of ... with any spiritual domain. Call it lack of sensitivity or whatever ... I just have no personal experience to inform my understanding. I would be easily able to deny any such realm except for a couple of nagging thoughts.

 

One is that many traditions ... but especially Buddhist and Daoist ... have this idea of attachment/clinging nature of mind as being problematic. But, is it mind or spirit ... or both ... that clings? Not being well versed in these ideas I hesitate to say. When I have thought about such things, I have had a thought informed by the notion of conservation of energy. That perhaps the spirit returns to some vast reservoir of spiritual energy available to be recycled in the next instance of life.  But, I can also imagine that after death a spirit conditioned by clinging may have a difficult time departing.

 

Which leads me to my next nagging thought. While I personnally have had no conscious interactions with spiritual entities, I have no doubt that there are those that have. Now, I am skeptical enough to be suspicious of such claims, except for one instance. Years ago, while visiting a cemetery with my wife and granddaughter, we caught her speaking as if to someone but there was no one there. She was not quite three years old at the time and completely without guile. When I asked who she was speaking to, she pointed and said the little girl. Now, I have never talked about this to anyone other than my wife. I only mention it now because there will undoubtedly be someone who cries BS about there being a spiritual realm. Me? I just don't know.

 

Enough imagining. Sorry to have wandered so far astray.

 

 

Edited by OldDog
Apology
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1 hour ago, rideforever said:

Scientists make "instruments" because they are unable to grasp that they are the instrument.

 

Interesting statement.

 

I seem to recall that somewhere in my wanderings it being said thay the mind is the means (instrument?) by which we have access to the Dao. If this were true, it presumably would be the basis for various meditation traditions.

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Personally I think our mind/spirit/soul is not a thing but a process such as a flame or a tornado. When the conditions for its existence are no longer there, the process will simply die out without it having to go anywhere. So in that sense I may also be called a materialist. But the natural consequence of considering our mind/spirit/soul as being not a thing but a process is that there is no essential difference between what happens inside of us and outside of us. The fixation on what happens inside of us as being what we are and what has to be defended is just a trick of natural evolution to make sure we are concerned about our own survival. Now this instinctual way of viewing things automatically leads to the illusion that there actually is a difference between our inner world and the outside world. Our "self" comes to be seen as something autonomous that stands opposite to the rest of the world. This is an illusion, and mystical practice is a way to break through that illusion. Science is another way. So one can be a mystic and a (materialistic) scientist at the same time!

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35 minutes ago, OldDog said:

Years ago, while visiting a cemetery with my wife and granddaughter, we caught her speaking as if to someone but there was no one there. She was not quite three years old at the time and completely without guile. When I asked who she was speaking to, she pointed and said the little girl. Now, I have never talked about this to anyone other than my wife. I only mention it now because there will undoubtedly be someone who cries BS about there being a spiritual realm. Me? I just don't know.

 

It is quite common for small children to have invisible (imaginary?) friends and helpers. I don't remember having had them myself but I read about it in books on child psychology.

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Posted (edited)
55 minutes ago, OldDog said:

I seem to recall that somewhere in my wanderings it being said thay the mind is the means (instrument?) by which we have access to the Dao. If this were true, it presumably would be the basis for various meditation traditions.

 

How could it be otherwise? Because Tao is supposed to be the foundation of everything it also has to be the foundation of what we consider ourselves. But that means that our inner life is what Tao does within us. So what we think, feel and do is actually a manifestation of Tao. The only thing hindering the realisation that this is so is the illusion that our Self would have to be an autonomous entity apart from the world and Tao. But in that way we are fooling ourselves, because - by definition - there are no entities independent of Tao. So it is al just a question of logic. Most of philosophical Taoism can be understood by clear thinking alone, although meditation will be of use to let the intellectual understanding sink in and integrate into our personality and way of living.

Edited by wandelaar
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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, wandelaar said:

The only thing hindering the realisation that this is so is the illusion that our Self

 

From a certain perspective Tao is the only thing there is, but this statement does not answer our existential questions.

Tao is alive, it makes things that are unconscious, and other things that are conscious.
Those conscious beings (like humans) are new centres of identity, they have their own autonomy. 
In fact Tao splits into many authonomous centres of identity.
We have to realise Tao (the whole) and also our own Identity, this is called communion - a bridge with 2 ends.

 

Humans suffer greatly and it is for this reason that they declare war on personal self.
But if you take a perfect child and fill it with shit, soon it becomes dark and hateful, and hates others.
Dos that mean it is not a beautiful child ?
No.   It just means it is born on a planet with very bad energy.
Perhaps you are chosen because you are strong, and existence has a job for you.

First we reach back to the Source and feel that, this is the first entry of Conscious light into us.
It cleans us, and gives us lifesupport from the womb.
Then we reach again into ourselves and feel that.
Then our identity is made, it is a bridge.
As we live on a horrendous planet, there is maximum urgency.

 

Edited by rideforever
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1 hour ago, rideforever said:

 

Hey.   Why don't you try the summary guidance I wrote up on the Turning the Light around Thread.   I would be interested to hear your results.
Let's do stuff.

Yes, why don't I do that?  I haven't been paying attention to that thread.  Sorry.  The thread title sounded like something I'm not into.

 

But I'll give it a shot and see what happens.

 

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1 hour ago, wandelaar said:

The subject of survival after death can be endlessly debated, and there are countless ways of explaining away the apparent inability of the dead to communicate with us. As I said the possibility of survival after death cannot be absolutely ruled out. But the same is true for the possibility that we change into a kind of muppets after death in some other dimension, or that we are reborn on some planet far away as creatures with three eyes and seven arms who like playing in the mud. With a couple of beers to loosen our imagination almost anything can seem possible, as long as we take care to provide for an "explanation" why nothing of the kind can be demonstrated to be true in our present life.

Yes, Chuang Tzu wondered about these things too.  He asked the questions but gave no answers.  

 

I don't know if he drank beer but I'm sure he had his share of wine.

 

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36 minutes ago, wandelaar said:

 

It is quite common for small children to have invisible (imaginary?) friends and helpers. I don't remember having had them myself but I read about it in books on child psychology.

I can't remember having imaginary friends either.  And it turned out. some of them weren't really friends at all when the shit hit the fan.

 

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And let us remember, Chuang Tzu said he dreamed he was a butterfly.  But he never said he was a butterfly.

 

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2 hours ago, rideforever said:

 

Hey.   Why don't you try the summary guidance I wrote up on the Turning the Light around Thread.   I would be interested to hear your results.
Let's do stuff.

Well, I looked through the entire thread.  I don't do "Light".  I do sometimes talk about "Energy" which is a purer form of Chi than is Light.

 

Nothing against what you folks are talking about in that thread.  It's just not me.

 

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35 minutes ago, wandelaar said:

So what we think, feel and do is actually a manifestation of Tao. The only thing hindering the realisation that this is so is the illusion that our Self would have to be an autonomous entity apart from the world and Tao.

 

Treading on controversial ground here. Dangerously close to saying that because everything we do is a manifestation of Dao that its all OK. Heading toward self justification here. 

 

And what about an autonomous self. Is it not conceivable that the Dao includes a certain degree of autonomy? What's wrong with that? How else do you account for all the aberrant forms of behavior? I can imagine ... imagination seeming to be acceptable in this thread ... having a degree of autonomous flexibility while still part of the Dao commonwealth ... if I may borrow from politics. Autonomous but not apart.

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38 minutes ago, Marblehead said:

I don't know if he drank beer but I'm sure he had his share of wine.

 

Indeed, such weighty questions are best considered over a glass of ones favorite beverage else we take ourselves too seriously. ; )

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@ OldDog

 

If such and such were so, than we would have something you consider undesirable. And thus you think it can't be so. That's the way of make-believe, not the way of Tao.

 

There is no reason to believe our own functioning is beyond the natural processes that operate everywhere else in the world. And both science, mysticism and Taoism point in the direction of the fundamental unity of the world including ourselves. Tao manifests both in spontaneity and in (cyclical) patterns. So there is no explanatory need left for extra autonomous human entities besides Tao. But I know the illusion is hard to break. The Buddhists almost succeeded, but they kept reincarnation and karma for ethical reasons. Same problem here: not being able to accept that the world on a fundamental level just isn't benevolent.

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6 hours ago, wandelaar said:

Same problem here: not being able to accept that the world on a fundamental level just isn't benevolent.

I can attest to that.

 

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What my mom used to say to me , if I was getting picky , was that if I didn't like that color candy , then I didn't really need to get any at all.  And so , she would say, ' if you think the world is so bad , then leave it'. 

 

Moreover , if the world handed everything to you on a platter , and all of it was sugar and spice , there truly wouldn't be anything for you to do , nor reason to do it. The world would be rendered useless boring and totally pointless. 

 

If you think this is some kind of fake perspective.. consider the number of people that die right as soon they they retire.

The rich and famous who burn themselves out, or consider the rich powerful exec, or brass , who goes to a madam for regular spankings.  The world must be understood to be benevolent in that it is NOT all heavenly sweetness , that one does NOT have a guaranteed road-map ,,  ( as handy as that might seem ) :)

But , if you think benevolence is only served up an silver platter , and just as you like it ,, well you just aren't going to get this point in the intended manner. And you're going to think that everyone who takes the world as the package deal , that it is , calling it good just like that  - a bullshitter. 

 

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48 minutes ago, Stosh said:

What my mom used to say to me , if I was getting picky , was that if I didn't like that color candy , then I didn't really need to get any at all.  And so , she would say, ' if you think the world is so bad , then leave it'. 

 

Moreover , if the world handed everything to you on a platter , and all of it was sugar and spice , there truly wouldn't be anything for you to do , nor reason to do it. The world would be rendered useless boring and totally pointless. 

 

If you think this is some kind of fake perspective.. consider the number of people that die right as soon they they retire.

The rich and famous who burn themselves out, or consider the rich powerful exec, or brass , who goes to a madam for regular spankings.  The world must be understood to be benevolent in that it is NOT all heavenly sweetness , that one does NOT have a guaranteed road-map ,,  ( as handy as that might seem ) :)

But , if you think benevolence is only served up an silver platter , and just as you like it ,, well you just aren't going to get this point in the intended manner. And you're going to think that everyone who takes the world as the package deal , that it is , calling it good just like that  - a bullshitter. 

 

+10.

And that^^ is what underlies the phrase: It's all good

Not that everything is heavenly sweetness, but that even the sour is a gift.

 

Sometimes breathing is easy, sometimes breathing is hard.

Would you have it any other way? Not me. ^_^

 

Laozi agrees:

Twenty-nine (F/E)

Do you think you can take over the universe and improve it?
I do not believe it can be done.

The universe is sacred.
You cannot improve it.
If you try to change it, you will ruin it.
If you try to hold it, you will lose it.

So sometimes things are ahead and sometimes they are behind;
Sometimes breathing is hard, sometimes it comes easily;
Sometimes there is strength and sometimes weakness;
Sometimes one is up and sometimes down.

Therefore the sage avoids extremes, excesses, and complacency.

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Posted (edited)
11 hours ago, Marblehead said:

And let us remember, Chuang Tzu said he dreamed he was a butterfly.  But he never said he was a butterfly.

 

He did admit to not being certain which one was the dreamer and which the dream. 

Who wakes from the waking dream?

 

Edited by silent thunder
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Well, I have no proof but I have never known a butterfly who could write the way Chuang Tzu wrote.  Go figure.

 

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9 hours ago, Marblehead said:

Well, I have no proof but I have never known a butterfly who could write the way Chuang Tzu wrote.  Go figure.

 

Ya got me there.

 

 

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9 hours ago, Marblehead said:

Well, I have no proof but I have never known a butterfly who could write the way Chuang Tzu wrote.  Go figure.

 

Yeah.. but he didn't write it. His disciples did a hundred years after he flittered away. 🦋 ^_^

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1 hour ago, rene said:

Yeah.. but he didn't write it. His disciples did a hundred years after he flittered away. 🦋 ^_^

But he, the real Chuang Tzu, is credited with the Inner Chapters, that is, Chapters 1 - 7.

 

But yes, the rest are generally credited to others.

 

Yes, perhaps he flittered fluttered away.

 

 

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Ohhhh.. the butterfly dream is in  the Inner ones?? My bad. :)

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22 minutes ago, rene said:

Ohhhh.. the butterfly dream is in  the Inner ones?? My bad. :)

Hehehe.  I had to go check before running my mouth.

 

Yes, the story is at the end of Chapter 2.  Chuang Tzu is speaking in the second person but it was he who dreamed.

 

 

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