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|Topic: No One Sees God
From: Ontario, Canada
Spiritual Anarchist writes:
Can I show that thinking leads to delusion? Yes I can.
In a way, sure.
You can show that thinking may lead to delusion if you do it in the way you describe.
This, in itself, is rather simple and obvious. Of course if you think in certain ways it can lead you to delusions.
But what if you don't do it the way you describe?
You have not shown that thinking must lead to delusion. And that's why Buddhism is not for everyone.
I have practiced these teachings and found that Buddhas observations on suffering and delusional thinking ring true based on my experience.
Again, this is fantastic. And I think you should continue with following your Buddhist path. It seems to be working wonderful for you.
Is this only my own subjective experience? No.
I am again in full agreement. Many others have found great success within the teachings of Buddha. They are very helpful teachings.
Could you or any one try these teachings to achieve the same results or realizations ? Yes.
This is the part that's just not true.
Can some people achieve the same results as you, or greater than yours? Yes, of course they could.
But all people? No, some people are just not built in a way that is conducive to Buddha's teachings.
It's the same with Christianity. Some people work extremely will with Christian teachings... it resonates with the way they are. For these people... the path of Christianity is the best way to go.
The point is to be honest with ourselves and see if we can identify the way we are built. Then to find a path that works with those conclusions. For some, this will be Buddha's teachings. For others, it will be Christianity. For others, something else...
People are different.
People are too different for any single thing (like Buddhism) to work for everyone.
When you are aware that you are sitting here reading what I have to write how can you know that you are not making a mistake? How do you know anything you are experiencing right now is real? How do you know you have a soul? How do you know if you are even aware? Perhaps that is a delusion?
I don't know these things.
This is the path to Nihilism.
No, it's not.
You're making the same mistake here as you do in showing how thinking leads to delusion. Just because it can, doesn't mean it must.
You can just as easily say "making up answers to these questions can be the path to delusion."
Yes, it's quite possible that not knowing the answers to your questions can lead to Nihilism.
There are a lot of things that can lead to Nihilism.
The question isn't can this lead to Nihilism? But must this lead to Nihilism? And the answer to that is "no."
If being aware of who I am is mistaken and delusional then perhaps that realization that I am delusional to think I know who I am is delusional? And perhaps that is delusional etc adinfinitum. To me this not clear reasoning.
Reality has no requirement to be clear to you.
It seems to me that there are honest questions from those who want an actual true realization of reality as it is...and there are people that just question to question.
Maybe there are answers, and maybe there aren't.
Maybe you have access to those answers, and maybe you don't.
Maybe you can share those answers with others, and maybe you can't.
This is just reality, not nihilism. Be honest.
It is not a true philosopher that simply finds a way to put a question mark at the end of every sentence.
It would be equally deceiving to place a period at the end of every sentence, don't you think?
When there is a statement we can make... then we should make the statement.
If there is a valid question... then we should ask the question.
My point is that you are forcing a statement where you have no grounds to do so.
Your defense seems to be that you don't like questions and therefore statements are better?
Perhaps your defense would be stronger if you actually supported your statement...
You will not assume that I am wrong on anything anymore then you would assume that I am right on anything.
I will assume that you are wrong on anything that you cannot support.
I will assume that you are right on all the things that you can support.
Does that seem fair to you?
You would only ask questions that you actually want the answer to and only questions you have thought about without trying to win an argument or prove a point.
You can win, if you'd like. I'm not overly interested in winning.
I am, however, interested in claims you can support. You have made many claims so far such as:
-awareness is better than thinking
-stop thinking and you remove all delusions
-strip away all delusions and what's left is your soul
-Buddhism is a teaching that will work for everyone
...yet, you have not supported a single one of these claims.
I then ask you to support them, or how you support them... and you then imply that asking questions is a waste of time.
You sound like you're trying to hide the fact that you don't actually have any support for your ideas. That isn't peaceful.
You have stated that me simply saying things doesn't prove anything. And I will counter that simply asking questions doesn't prove anything either.
I'm not trying to prove anything.
I'm trying to ask you how you support your claims, to see if the information you're providing is worth looking into.
The same can be said of delusional thinking. Most people do not meditate or dedicate their lives to being mindful. So most people are not at peace with themselves and find that applying compassion only plays a small part in their lives in the form of pity or trying to get sympathy or even results in apathy and Nihilistic thinking.
Now that's some support!
This is something I can verify, and yes... I do see this in my experiences as well.
However, you have only shown that meditation and such is an answer for some people (like yourself). Not an answer for all people (as you're claiming).
I do not feel like I am a fool because I am so obviously wrong and you called me on it. Because this simply isn't true.
You're right, that's not true.
I haven't called you on "being obviously wrong." I don't think you are obviously wrong.
I called you on "supporting your claims." That's not saying you're wrong... that's asking how you know that you're right.
The two are different things. And, finally, you've started to make some statements that do actually support your claims. Now, do you have any more support? Or would you like to adjust some of your claims?
And although it is true certain aspects have in fact been documented and proven in Psychology Journals on both Meditation and Mindfulness I wasn't really trying to get into scientific evidence for how I see things as much as I was just commenting on human nature and aspects of delusional thinking.
Although being documented and proven in Journals would be great support... this is not the only kind of support I care about.
I care about any support you can offer for the things you say. Maybe it's just personal experience (in which case... it will be difficult to claim things for other people). Maybe it's group experience (in which case... it will be difficult to claim for all people). I would just like to know why you say the things you say... it allows me to decide how much I should accept your point of view.
Perhaps I should go to the topic Book Nook The Righteous Mind" and get out all my ideas there and come back to this post later to see if anyone addresses Michael Novak or his book here. Because that is the OP of this thread. Not a class on Metaphysics versus Buddhist teachings on Delusional thinking.
Very true. And almost entirely my fault. I'll stop posting to this thread with off-topic-ness now. Sorry for intruding.
I did put a response together to your last post, though. And it's posted here. I've hidden it (because it is off-topic.). If you'd like to see it, use the "Peek" button in the bottom-right of my post, it will allow you to read everything I wrote.
Member (Idle past 3521 days)
From: Raleigh NC
Ok back on topic. I have read the book and I am re reading it to make sure I haven't missed anything. Is there any one on here that has actually read No One Sees God?
If so I will start bringing up points Michael Novak makes and deconstructing them. Many times he comes off to me as very sincere. But ultimately he makes a case for Christianity being responsible for every advance in mankind's progress spiritually, philosophically economically etc.
To him Atheist are fools because they are a minority and just don't get it. But the main point is he only addresses the Nihilist Atheist. And Nihilistic Atheism is a strawman.
Nihilism is not a philosophy but a state of mind created by letting others think for you.
All paths lead to Nihilism because all paths have leaders. Leaders require sheep.
The Gadfly must not only sting the horses but the sheep also.
I think I see a strong similarity in Christian and Atheist tactics.
The Atheist likes to point out what a great world we would live in if we had no religion. South Park did a brilliant spoof of this. When I saw it being 90% Atheist I cringed and was insulted. But on some level they are right. The truth hurts.
Christians like to claim that all civilization comes from them and without religion we would never have advanced beyond savages. This is patently absurd and standing truth on its head.
So then where is truth to be found?
I see Atheism and Religion as two extremes.
One that is so gullible that they will accept almost anything fed to them.
And the other so skeptical that they reject anything before even tasting it.
I say if something taste that bad spit it out!
A Jealous Angry God that loves you? That floods the Earth and kills babies? That suicides to get attention and needs constant praise because he can create a world and you can't ? (sticks out tongue) That makes deals with a devil to see what Job can take? That ask Abraham to sacrifice his son just to see if he would do it ?
Yuck Sick Spit it out!
As for Atheist. You know you are attacking a strawman here. Live dare to breath! Meditate. Seek truth even if it scares you. Ask yourself who you are? What is love ? What is truth? Why do we create? What are dreams? Do you have a soul? Taste it. Write Poetry. Study Philosophy. Seek wisdom not just data! Live Live Live! Are you part of a greater being or is this all a delusion?
Aren't you at least a little curious? ! Don't let religion decide this all for you because it is repulsive.So what ever religion says the truth must be the opposite? There are some very spiritual people that deny religion is truth. Read "Is God A Taoist". Read Anything by John Shelby Spong. Read The Hitchhikers Guide to The Galaxy series. Douglas Adams was an Atheist like Einstein was an Atheist. Study Shamanism. Go on a Vision Quest!
Do you have Freewill? Make sure you can say you do not with certainty before you waste your freewill singing with the Determinist Sheep! Question Nihilism. IF you say you are not a Nihilist then don't try to prove this to me. Prove it to yourself!
(Excerpt) One Taste
by Brian Gordon
"Compare your most unnerving least explainable lucid experiences whether dream induced drug induced or just paying attention right "Now. Try and find the differences.
Now question those differences. Is the one taste coming through yet? When you think you got "it" Don’t relax. Don’t pat yourself on the back.
Don’t indulge in fears of what is next (There is no "next" in the Now) Taste the perfectness in your uncomfortableness underneath the pain behind you... in through the out door into the unknown
The unknown isn't unreachable just unspeakable. What is the difference between the one taste and love? What does perfection taste like? Can you taste the tea underneath the bitter and the sweet yet? The tea is in you not the cup. You have to pour it into the cup in order to drink it or do you?
If it is in you and it is flowing then you are flowing so why pour yourself into a cup at all.
What do you taste like?"
Junior Member (Idle past 3640 days)
Spiritual Anarchist said: " no religion including Judaism directly follows or is anyway connected to Pantheism in any way."
Actually, I just checked wikipedia and according to them; "It is generally regarded that Hindu religious texts are the oldest known literature containing pantheistic ideas. The Advaita Vedanta school of Hinduism teaches that the Atman (true self; human soul) is indistinct from Brahman (the unknown reality of everything).
The branches of Hinduism teaching forms of pantheism are known as non-dualist schools."
What aetheism and pantheism have in common is that there is no separate god. God is not outside or somehow out there.
Instead god is the very reality that it created.
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