Originally posted by adjensen
Originally posted by NorEaster
The world is rife with people who seek to bamboozle others by claiming to know "the truth", so I think that I would side with my friend Madness
on this one. I would need to know or see something that demonstrates that this is, in fact, something beyond an instance of someone who claims that
he is enlightened and I am not.
The identity of the person should never enter into the determination. This is where human beings get redirected. Cult of personality, is what they
call it. Adolph Hitler had his entire personal history suppressed in order to create himself as unique and someone who could be anointed. Identity is
a trap in this sort of situation.
I disagree, because if someone is saying that their basis for the claims they are making is some personal enlightenment, then who they are is the only
means by which their credibility can be evaluated.
There is, for example, a prolific poster on ATS who makes claims such as these -- he knows the truth, he has been given prophecy by God, and so forth.
However, upon looking into him as a person, and the things that he writes, it becomes evident that he is mentally ill and suffers from delusional
thinking, so one would be foolish to put any faith in what he says.
Cults exist because people are willing to accept the word of someone that they are enlightened, solely on the basis of their word. I don't buy that.
I also stated that most folks don't have years to spend finding the personality cracks within such a messenger. That poster (the crazy one) is easy to
spot, but most aren't. Sociopaths are gifted with the capacity to know what you are expecting from them, and at all times. The person simply cannot be
the message. The message itself has to be the focus.
The only things I would ask would be:
1) What is the nature of this truth, where did it come from, and how have you validated it?
2) Tell me something specific about myself that I have forgotten.
The first would allow me to assess the nature of the individual, the second would be a potential validation that they are more than they seem. I
suspect that they would draw a blank on the second (or come up with something vague) and that the first would come down to "I figured it out myself
and have no basis for believing it, other than my own conviction that it is true."
The man in question may not be remarkable in any sense whatsoever, and may have only (only?) been presented with the specifics of reality in a macro
sense. Certainly yoiu're not expecting him to also possess your personal information. After all, if this man was given the inner workings of reality,
why would that information include your personal history? Do you think this man would have to be a psychic?
Well, in the OP, you said "about why you (specifically) exist", so I assumed that this meant that he would have information specific to me, and should
therefore know something about me that he should not. If he can't demonstrate that, I would question what he would claim about why I, specifically,
What I meant was "why" in the larger scheme of things "you specifically exist". Meaning, why the single human being that's born, that lives and then
dies on Planet Earth exists. I'm sorry that I wasn't clear in my statement.
If, on the other hand, I was satisfied with the answers to both questions, I would listen to what they had to say, and apply my
own validation to it.
What would be that validation criteria? That's what I'm looking for. Your validation criteria.
I have my own perception of truth, of course. For me to accept that someone's truth which contradicts mine is correct, I would need to be convinced
first that I am wrong, and secondly, that they are right. That is not an easy thing to do, hence the point that I would need something other than "I
thought this up" or "It came in a dream" or something along those lines.
To what extent are you married to your own definition of reality, then? As someone who's always been seeking, my own devotion to any specific version
has been conditional, and subject to wholesale revision if the case can be made. That said, to get me to stop and listen, I don't have to be
convinced that I'm wrong. I just need to find that the alternate version is based on solid principle. I'm not getting married to it, I'm just sitting
down for coffee with it.
How did this person come by this information, and why them, rather than someone else? How does this information fit into the generally
accepted view of reality, and if it doesn't, or it conflicts, why does their perspective make more sense than the accepted view, and why has it only
been revealed now?
Some of the most brilliant minds in history have been focused on these matters for thousands of years. I think it highly unlikely (though possible)
that some random guy in 2011 spent time meditating, and suddenly discovered a truth that had eluded everyone before him, but for which there is no
basis apart from him claiming it to be true.
edit on 4-1-2011 by adjensen because: dropped word
So, what's the difference between the thousands of years before (let's say) the advent of Christianity, and the thousands of years since? One
difference is that humanity's entire grasp of what is definitely real (sub-atomic structure, physics, cosmology, intra-cellular biology,
mirco-biology) and a definitive means to accurately test these aspects of reality that were not known before. If anything, the more advanced a
civilization, the better shot it has at figuring out its own existential nature.
As far as "why them?". You could also ask "Why not them?" In a lawn, which blade of grass is better than all the others? And what would be the
criteria involved in establishing its supremacy? A poll taken of all the other blades of grass to determine which one they think is best? Certainly
not the tallest one, since the lawn mower's job is to make sure that the tallest blades are taken down a few notches. Maybe it's about the
information, and not about the blade of grass that happened upon it?
As far as information having been overlooked, when was the last time that anyone actually bothered to look any harder than to choose an established
premise and accept it? Monotheism, pantheism, panentheism, atheism, alien-theism, All-ism, we-are-the-All-ism; it's all pretty worked over, and has
been for at least hundreds of years (even though the alien wrinkle is fairly recent, it's not a true explanation of reality, but just a rationale for
why humans believe in any theisms at all) Since the Theory of Relativity, no one's touched the issue of reality other than to suggest that its
origins can't be known by either theologists or scientists.
So, why wouldn't this information - if it was in the possession of anyone at all - break loose from the traditional mold? The traditional mold is
either thousands of years old, or it states that the Truth is impossible to ever know. Both sort of put any new breakthrough into the box where
whatever it is would clash with the accepted wisdom.
What would be your specific questions to challenge its potential authenticity?
edit on 1/4/2011 by NorEaster because: (no reason