It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Spiritual Reorientation 10: The Art of Life

page: 4
7
<< 1  2  3    5  6  7 >>

log in

join
share:

posted on Jul, 21 2014 @ 08:40 PM
link   
a reply to: BlueMule

Not a fundamental unity. I doubt spirituality started as any more a collective species product than the pythagoras theorem did. But what do I know?




posted on Jul, 21 2014 @ 09:15 PM
link   

originally posted by: TzarChasm
a reply to: BlueMule

Not a fundamental unity.


What could you possibly be basing that assumption on?


I doubt spirituality started as any more a collective species product than the pythagoras theorem did. But what do I know?


What do you know about shamanism?



posted on Jul, 21 2014 @ 09:22 PM
link   
a reply to: BlueMule

That you should start a thread on it if you want to discuss it. That's how it works around here, aye?
edit on 21-7-2014 by TzarChasm because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 22 2014 @ 02:12 AM
link   

originally posted by: Aphorism
a reply to: Bluesma

It's interesting that they will study meditation, but will not study, say, the result of exercise, or a good diet, or reading, or fresh air, or good sleep, on the brain. It's almost as if there is a bias here.


Is that a joke? Sarcasm or irony perhaps? I sometimes don't catch it on forums because of the lack of sensual input, like tone of voice and such.
You don't actually suggest that studies are never done on the effects of exercise, good diet, reading, fresh air or good sleep ??? Of course they are, and tons of them each year! They also show to have great benefits. There is of course no reason to say that we need to limit ourselves to only ONE beneficial practice? Like, I ate a broccoli today, so I can't do anything else today that nurtures good health and development?
I probably didn't catch the humor there, if so I apologize for the misunderstanding.




Anyways, spirituality is not about attaining personal benefits, because if it is, it reduces it to the attaining of currency and profit. If meditation is about attaining personal benefit, then we should perhaps let them acquire enough of it as they can.




"Currency and profit"... hmm. I almost embraced the word profit, as it is used in France, to mean any sort of benefit, but in english that more often is a reference to financial revenue. I am not sure how one can equal the health and mental benefits of meditation with financial gain?

Oh... wait, you might be making reference to gurus types, spiritual teachers who charge to teach people these techniques? I didn't think of that as I have never gone to one, though meditation has been a very prominent part of my life.
Some people do choose to get guidance for that skill... but does that make the practice itself no longer valuable?
Some people pay a dietician to teach them how to eat in healthy ways- does that mean that the practice of eating healthy food should not be done, and does not have benefit (in terms of ones well being) ?

Yes, I do believe in letting people do as much meditation as they want. Just as I believe in letting people who want to lecture against it in public do so.
As long as they are responsible enough to accept the effects of their choices- that for one hour a day, they might have to stop moving and acting,
Or that lots of other people may respond to them with counter arguments or objections.

Neither will kill you in the long run. Whatever.



posted on Jul, 22 2014 @ 02:57 AM
link   

originally posted by: Aphorism
What sorts of feats besides sitting do you think you’re accomplishing with meditation? I sincerely wish to know and this is an honest question.

There is a difference between personal benefit, and a benefit to the world and mankind. What I want to know is, how has your spirituality benefited anything other than yourself?


These questions were not directed at me, but I found them relevant questions to ask, and will use them as a stimulant for my own thought expression. I talk of my own experience, as that is what I know most about.

In my case, an especially challenging childhood had left me with various mental habits and physical behaviors that were often an obstacle to my intents.

I suffered what is currently referred to as PTSD, and a hypersensitivity-hyperarousal that could either be a part of that, or a developed through early experiences, or maybe even born with (as in the theory of Highly Sensitive Person, a trait due to a biological difference in the nervous system).


The ways this became a problem for me are too long too list. I instinctively began to avoid situations of possible conflict, pressure, or excitement. I began to run from a world that was just “Too Much”. Where events could make my brain short out and go blank at any second.

To add to that, a constantly running dialogue in my head added to stress, as I was used to having to get through life and challenges without guidance or protection, so emotional and mental exhaustion effected my health, as did my ability to rely upon my bodies instinctual reflexes (which would have given my conscious mind a break form the work once in a while, and allowed me to do things quicker).

Through meditation practice, I was able to gain more awareness of the processes happening within my body – like heart rate, breathing, blood pressure, muscle tension.
I was able to work on a cooperation between mind and body, somewhat like a “discussion between parts” which allowed them to working together in tandem more effectively. My mind learned to shut up and be still once in a while, which would aid the body to relax and process stimuli easier.

This post is too long already so I won’t go into all the ways this enabled me to overcome a handicap. But how did this help the world?

I became a more active citizen, mother, daughter, sister, wife, friend….. I was able to engage in activities which involve lots of pressure and excitement, I was able to engage more in relationships and events. Now I have raised active and intelligent successful members of society, I have taken part in teaching the young in our community, I have done work with troubled individuals through animals, I have had various jobs, currently in a hospital.

It was a progressive growth, but if I hadn’t done this internal work? My guess? I would have become a single, anthropophoic, possibly alcoholic, homeless person hiding in a carton box somewhere.


Spirituality is about developing an internal cooperation and harmony. All of our choices of action arise from that internal world! Our active states are born from inside behind our eyelids! How can you claim that the exterior growth is only what matters, and not the seed it sprung from?

edit on 22-7-2014 by Bluesma because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 22 2014 @ 03:06 AM
link   


Let’s create a dialectic without the pettiness. Let’s make two opposing views one.


I would be happy to. So let's try again.




There is a difference between personal benefit, and a benefit to the world and mankind. What I want to know is, how has your spirituality benefited anything other than yourself?


While this is a legitimate question I don't feel that it is an essential one, and I will explain to you why (again, my opinion, and you don't have to agree with it, only to think about it if you want).
There is no real difference between "personal benefit, and a benefit to the world and mankind", like you put it. Every one of us is part of the mankind, connected and interacting and influencing each other. From the spiritual point of view there is no difference between going out there and helping a stranger or working on your own person; that will be relevant only in the material realm where whatever you gain is somebody else' loss.

You must agree that following a spiritual way (of course, depends on which one, but I will refer here at the major ones like buddhism, hinduism, cristianity) one automatically learns about compassion, about caring for the others, about forgiving and accepting others, and so on. Becoming a better human being automatically benefits other human beings. A rich person will make charities, share limited resources like money and goods because this is what he have to give. A spiritual person will share love, and compassion and peace to others, and that in itself is a great benefits for every living being, not only humans. And he will never run out of resources, will never feel like " I gave enough love for today, I'd better save some for myself too". Even without the intention or effort of "doing the help", a spiritual person, especially a realized one will affect the life of whoever he interacts with in a beneficial way; his family, friend, co-workers, strangers on the supermarket. It's not like they have x hours per day to help others, then they come home, hang their medals and return to be couch potatoes until the next day. We are part of a dynamic, living system and every thing we think, do or say influence others; the very existence of a spiritual being with a compassionate heart is a benefit for the world.

Also it only makes sense that before trying to help others one should know how to help itself. If I want to be a doctor and heal people, I'll first go and learn medicine, so I can know how a human body works and what it needs in order to stay healthy. From the spiritual point of view is not enough just to know the theory, one also have to use it on itself. I wont be much help as a doctor, nor inspire trust to my patients if I carry around a broken leg or some infested wounds. I won't be much of a help to others if I am full of anger, jealousy or egotistic desires.

If with your question you meant to help the mankind on a grand scale, like making world peace, or mass healings or bringing a new religion to the world, the answer is that whoever really practice spirituality with commitment and seriosity will snap out of these dreams of grandor very fast. Maybe someone's fate is to be a new buddha or christ for this world, but this is not the purpose of spirituality, if it's meant to happen it will happen by itself. Following any spiritual way with these expectations in mind will be a hindrance and will never lead to any benefit, for oneself or the others.

So this is the reason that I promote respect for everyone's spiritual way. You say most people are shallow and start a spiritual practice out of desire for personal rewards. The funny thing is that we ALL do that, no exception. So what? We may start from the wrong reasons, but the beautiful thing is that once on a spiritual path one start to see their own hypocrisy, their own hidden selfishness and arrogance. Then one have only two options: to give up the spirituality and go on following it's egotistical dreams of grandor or to keep practicing and becoming a better human being. We cannot cheat; we cannot lie to ourselves.
So I say no matter why a person feels drawn toward a spiritual way, this is a good thing. We will learn something, we will develop, even if a little. And like I said, I believe that everyone is on the exact path that fits it's personality and level of realization, the one that can teach him the most. I believe that as long as we learn something is only for the best; when we will be ready, another path will open for us automatically to take us to the next level. "When the student is ready the master appears". There is no lower and higher spirituality; they are all steps toward the same destination.




What I wish to understand is your reasoning, how you have arrived at your convictions. Maybe you can share an experience with me.


I have no fixed conviction; that's why I talked about exploring and discovering. The view is changing as I travel in this unknown land to me; all the time I understand or learn something new, either about my self, about the world, about my own path. Every step takes me deeper, and the more I know the more I realize how little I know. Maybe the only conviction I have, and this is something I was born with, is that we are more than the physical body, that the spiritual part in us is much bigger and important than the material one. They are both important and are not to be neglected; yet the spiritual part is bigger and immortal. So based on that i'm set to know and fulfill that spiritual part of me. I'm not looking for a specific thing, I don't chase any promises; I only want to discover by myself if this s the truth. I know that there are people who know the way, there are practices specifically designed for this purpose, so I gratefully used them and learn from them. Whatever I will discover at the end of the road is fine with me, since I have no expectation. I don't know if I will find God, or Budhha, or Krishna, or a divine being encompassing all the known gods, if it will be a big dark void or only my pragmatical and curious self. The discovery itself is the purpose.

I don't know what experiences to share with you beyond what I already shared, since they are all personal and meaningful only to me. Most probably we are not practising the same spiritual way, and I feel like you are more concentrated on motivations and general aspects of spirituality than small details. So far you seemed to be against meditation, against Buddha, Christ and all the rest; also very reluctant to get into specifics, so no wonder it feels like I have to justify myself and my spirituality to you, which is not my intention. Sharing goes both ways, so if you want to discuss a specific practice or path, something you also have experience with or have problems with, I'm happy to go for it.
In the meanwhile have a nice day, and hope I managed to answer your questions, only if partially. English is not my primary language so sometimes the things I want to say come out a bit weird.


edit on 22-7-2014 by WhiteHat because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 22 2014 @ 07:48 AM
link   
a reply to: WhiteHat

You make a living by what you get and a life by what you give. I think you have the art of life well in hand.



posted on Jul, 22 2014 @ 08:13 AM
link   
a reply to: TzarChasm

thank you,
I try to do my best.



posted on Jul, 22 2014 @ 08:25 PM
link   
a reply to: InTheLight

This is not true. There is most definitely an end to seeking. That is a false belief that should be tossed in the fire along with the rest. A lot of people, those who seek through thought, and those who try to find themselves through Maya, thought and the Body/mind complex assume this, and when they eventually fail, they perpetuate this assumption and false belief. Nothing could be further from the truth.
edit on 22-7-2014 by Visitor2012 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 22 2014 @ 08:45 PM
link   
a reply to: Visitor2012

Just as there would be no point to skepticism if it didn't end. Or for that matter, appetite.



posted on Jul, 22 2014 @ 10:41 PM
link   

originally posted by: BlueMule
a reply to: Visitor2012

Just as there would be no point to skepticism if it didn't end. Or for that matter, appetite.


Actually and originally 'Skeptikoi', is a position that asserts nothing.

en.wikipedia.org...

It means that nothing is taken in confidence.

So therefore that God cannot exist in the Formal sense, arises 'Skeptikoi' as to how that can be proven.



Pyrrhonism, or Pyrrhonian skepticism, was a school of skepticism founded by Aenesidemus in the 1st century BC and recorded by Sextus Empiricus in the late 2nd century or early 3rd century AD. It was named after Pyrrho, a philosopher who lived from c. 360 to c. 270 BC, although the relationship between the philosophy of the school and that of the historical figure is murky. A revival of the use of the term occurred during the 17th century.


Source

Those who call themselves in ancient discipline ? Would have those dedicated to the origin of the term, rolling, proverbially in their graves. This the result of how the term Skepticism is currently related, on the internet.

Any thoughts?





edit on 22-7-2014 by Kashai because: Content edit



posted on Jul, 23 2014 @ 02:01 AM
link   
a reply to: Bluesma



I probably didn't catch the humor there, if so I apologize for the misunderstanding.


I was being sarcastic yes. Health benefits are health benefits after all. I do not see how meditation (let’s be clear here; I’m speaking of the typical meditation as sold by new age spiritualists and mystics) makes one any more spiritually gifted than anyone else. Training the mind does not require sitting in a lotus, and can be performed at any time of the day.


"Currency and profit"... hmm. I almost embraced the word profit, as it is used in France, to mean any sort of benefit, but in english that more often is a reference to financial revenue. I am not sure how one can equal the health and mental benefits of meditation with financial gain?


Much is done for personal benefit. Brushing the teeth for instance. I am not opposed to people meditating for personal benefit because it is honest. But when it is sold as a means to spiritual transcendence, for which there is no evidence or study, we see that on top of health benefits they are supplanting another, i.e. a religious ideal, spiritual currency.


I became a more active citizen, mother, daughter, sister, wife, friend….. I was able to engage in activities which involve lots of pressure and excitement, I was able to engage more in relationships and events. Now I have raised active and intelligent successful members of society, I have taken part in teaching the young in our community, I have done work with troubled individuals through animals, I have had various jobs, currently in a hospital.


It sounds like you took the necessary steps to artistically invent, challenge and learn about yourself and form your life. If meditation was the only means for you to accomplish this, there is nothing wrong with that in my eyes. Meditation is not any sort of requirement for this to happen however. I think we can agree on that.


Spirituality is about developing an internal cooperation and harmony. All of our choices of action arise from that internal world! Our active states are born from inside behind our eyelids! How can you claim that the exterior growth is only what matters, and not the seed it sprung from?


We react, make choices and act according to our relationship with everything else. For instance, if you hadn’t had a challenging childhood, you wouldn’t have developed your conditions. The same with having no guidance through challenges and life’s hurdles. Rather, the seed the internal world has sprung from is the outer world, and external growth is the manifestation or embodiment of “inner-growth”.



posted on Jul, 23 2014 @ 02:02 AM
link   
a reply to: WhiteHat

Your English is fantastic. And thank you for sharing your opinions.

I agree with most of the things you have written except for a few key elements. I will raise some minor objections because you share some similar notions with many people, and I believe these notions to be somewhat dangerous in the grand scheme of things. You need not respond to my opinions, but if you wish to challenge some of my ideas, or discuss anything, I would be honored.

I wish to better clarify my stance on spirituality. I, like you, value perspectivism. Because every single individual peers at the world and interprets it through there own eyes, their own “perspective”, each spirituality necessarily grounds itself in this perspective. I can only say that every spirituality is as different and as unique as the individual who embodies it. This can be confirmed by talking to anyone about what spirituality means to them. It is up to them to put the “breath of life” (spiritus) into their spirituality.


You must agree that following a spiritual way (of course, depends on which one, but I will refer here at the major ones like buddhism, hinduism, cristianity) one automatically learns about compassion, about caring for the others, about forgiving and accepting others, and so on.


Now, as I see it, spirituality (in the religious sense) is not a prerequisite to any sort of compassion, caring and forgiving. You are right to say that these doctrines teach such notions, but there is no religious monopoly on them. One can be just as compassionate, forgiving and accepting of others without religion. I think we can agree on this. Compassion, forgiveness, acceptance, care is an aspect of our humanity and not our spirituality, although for me, spirituality and humanity are one and the same.

I hold a different view than most in this area and expect some opposition, but I don’t believe that compassion, forgiveness and acceptance are of any sort of special trait. This isn’t to speak ill of benevolence, but it is not always needed or wanted. They are simply attempts at pain-killers, and not any cure. It’s great to have compassionate and forgiving people around—I mean it feels nice, but then again so does someone with a good sense of humour—but these virtues are the very least of what someone can do in any given situation. So I don’t necessarily think that the “love” of the spiritual person you speak of is of any real consequence or value. He sounds like he has employed himself to make others feel good, which sounds nice, but only on the surface. I don’t think there is anything wrong with this, but I do think one can do more spiritually.


If with your question you meant to help the mankind on a grand scale, like making world peace, or mass healings or bringing a new religion to the world, the answer is that whoever really practice spirituality with commitment and seriosity will snap out of these dreams of grandor very fast.


I disagree with this quite profusely, and I’ve mentioned this a few times in this series. I think the idea of arguing the futility and vanity of action is false, and tantamount to nihilism, and a mistake of most spiritual doctrines. This can be proved by moving something from one spot to another. With the such little effort it takes to move something from one place to another, we have changed the world, however little. As we can see throughout history, paradigm shifts grew out of the mind of one individual, the prophets for instance, the inventors, the literati, the leaders, the revolutionaries, the philosophers. Everything we call society, religion, science was made by someone, not unlike any one else. This didn’t arise out of fate or chance, but by choice and decision; it didn’t arise out of compassion or “love”, but by creativity and ingenuity. I believe the opposite is the case in regards to spiritual hinderance—the belief that one cannot, and therefor should not, attempt to think big and change anything is a myth. This leaves leadership in the hands of those who are confident enough to alter paradigms, and these folk are usually out for a more evil form of power—tyranny and control.


Maybe the only conviction I have, and this is something I was born with, is that we are more than the physical body, that the spiritual part in us is much bigger and important than the material one.


I refuse to tell you what you should or shouldn’t believe, but for the sake of the reader, I will offer my viewpoint. Unfortunately I do not see reason to believe this. In fact, I think it is entirely dangerous, as it forces one to mentally eviscerate and fracture themselves, and has been a theme in this entire series. Indeed, this shift also represents the subversion of the idea and word “spirit” by ecclesiastical doctrines—the mutiny of the spirit I call it, when those who needed to justify their gods and demons to the populace, began their campaign of subverting the pagans by overthrowing their language and stealing their words. I will not reiterate any of my arguments because they are still available in any of my previous threads. Since I have no reason to stake claim nor believe in the immaterial, and everything I love, my family, my friends, my art, are of material substance, I can only apply spirituality to what seems immaterial, which in the case of the individual, is their actions. We are more than just material bodies, yes, but only insofar as we are capable of action.

This is why I am troubled by meditation. Sure it’s healthy and beneficial, but it is simply exercise. Remove the mystical connotations and romantic fables, what we have is inaction, or the accomplishing of very little. I imagine a species of sitting animals. Myself, I do not sit and meditate any longer—I rest enough when I sleep and I sleep quite well.

Other than that, whitehat, I am in entire agreement with how you view spirituality as an individual’s path and that we can never step into another’s path.

Thank you for sharing.



edit on 23-7-2014 by Aphorism because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 23 2014 @ 02:12 AM
link   
a reply to: Visitor2012



This is not true. There is most definitely an end to seeking. That is a false belief that should be tossed in the fire along with the rest. A lot of people, those who seek through thought, and those who try to find themselves through Maya, thought and the Body/mind complex assume this, and when they eventually fail, they perpetuate this assumption and false belief. Nothing could be further from the truth.


No one is a failure when they seek spirituality. The spiritual caste is a myth. There is no spiritual ladder with many rungs, no pecking order, no spiritual king of the hill. If you have ended seeking, you have ended seeking. You have stopped. You have concluded. Your curiosity has waned. Nothing more.



posted on Jul, 23 2014 @ 07:04 AM
link   
a reply to: Aphorism

I always take a peek at these threads of yours, your certainty always amuses me..

And I don't really care if I can't prove squat to you, I know.. we know, your words do not change our reality, to me you're a clueless muggle if we're gonna cut to the chase and be honest.

And you look down on us..
You're like a petulant child, thread after thread denouncing mystics.
Tedious and inaccurate, that's all I've got to say, Bluemule always seem to do a good job of refuting most everything you say

Tsk tsk tsk



posted on Jul, 23 2014 @ 09:09 AM
link   

originally posted by: TheLaughingGod
a reply to: Aphorism

I always take a peek at these threads of yours, your certainty always amuses me..

And I don't really care if I can't prove squat to you, I know.. we know, your words do not change our reality, to me you're a clueless muggle if we're gonna cut to the chase and be honest.

And you look down on us..
You're like a petulant child, thread after thread denouncing mystics.
Tedious and inaccurate, that's all I've got to say, Bluemule always seem to do a good job of refuting most everything you say

Tsk tsk tsk


why don't you try refuting aphorism? instead of acting as though you have already done so.



posted on Jul, 23 2014 @ 09:14 AM
link   

originally posted by: Aphorism

There is no spiritual ladder with many rungs


If that is true, then scientists should not be seeing astounding things when they study the brains of meditating monks. But they do.

You keep saying things that science and scholarship can easily refute. You don't have to take my word for it, you could do your own independent learning. But I guess stoking your grudge is more fun?

Buddha on the Brain

[...]

'The researchers had never seen anything like it. Worried that something might be wrong with their equipment or methods, they brought in more monks, as well as a control group of college students inexperienced in meditation. The monks produced gamma waves that were 30 times as strong as the students'. In addition, larger areas of the meditators' brains were active, particularly in the left prefrontal cortex, the part of the brain responsible for positive emotions.'



posted on Jul, 23 2014 @ 09:18 AM
link   
a reply to: BlueMule

how were these gamma rays produced exactly? or is that too far off topic?
edit on 23-7-2014 by TzarChasm because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 23 2014 @ 09:19 AM
link   

originally posted by: TzarChasm

why don't you try refuting aphorism? instead of acting as though you have already done so.


Aphorism has been refuted many times over. He (gender assumption acknowledged) need not bother.



posted on Jul, 23 2014 @ 09:22 AM
link   

originally posted by: BlueMule

originally posted by: TzarChasm

why don't you try refuting aphorism? instead of acting as though you have already done so.


Aphorism has been refuted many times over. He (gender assumption acknowledged) need not bother.


i dont see how. i think its more of an impasse than anything else.



new topics

top topics



 
7
<< 1  2  3    5  6  7 >>

log in

join