very interesting Mr. Pid. i personally abhor the label "atheist".
but to me, it seems, the mention of "realist" is just as unnecessary;
"I rely on things that can be proven, and avoid acting on things that can't."
shouldn't acceptance of "what is" be taken into account, without a proven explanation? there are many "theories" in science, shouldn't that apply to the realm of the mystical too?
have you seen this documentary, regarding synthetic biology?
good answer to that student.
Topic seems to be off to good start...
"consider again that dot; that's here, that's home, that's us. on it, everyone you love, everyone you know. everyone you've ever heard of. every human being who ever was lived out their lives. the aggregates of joy, of suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies and economic doctrines; every hunter and forager; every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization; every king and peasant, every young couple in love; every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer; every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every superstar. every supreme leader; every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there. on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam. it's been said that astronomy is a humbling and character building experience; there is, perhaps, no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. to me it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot; the only home we've ever known."
- Carl Sagan on Voyager's picture of Earth.
some people have said that because science doesn't know everything, then science knows nothing. that, i believe, is incorrect.
but while science is essential in seeking truth about our understanding of the Universe, then so is spirituality. one and the same. string theory, quantum physics meets the pure mystical, dark, deep psychedelic enlightenment. holographic postulation and third eye knowledge.
all channels should be open.
Chary though I am of labels as they tend to cause people to view others unidimensionally, there is one label I'm often tagged with that I take particular exception to. That is the term Athiest. I am not "from or away from Theism," as though it were the default condition, which it isn't. I never bought into it from the get-go. Instead, I studied the origins of this apparent mass psychosis and now see it as merely an outdated socio-political control technology whose deployment and adoption were successful because it preyed on humans greatest fear: The Unknown. Humans abhor the feeling of Not Knowing so deeply that they routinely proxy in all manor of hallucinatory, unfounded and convenient alternatives just so they can feel "safe."
I, for one, am quite comfortable with the reality that the set of what I can't prove and therefore don't know is much, much larger than what I can. Not only that, but in fact I'm quite happy about that. How much would life suck if there was nothing new to learn, no alternative experiences yet to explore? I suspect that many of us also share this perspective. Why is it that we so enjoy the unpredictably of Dead shows, especially the jamming aspect? The Unknown is only scary in our own minds if we choose to look at it that way. I don't.
As for the label thing, I'm much more comfortable with the word Realist. I rely on things that can be proven, and avoid acting on things that can't. I certainly know the difference between mere belief and truth. Truth implies proof. Proof requires a rebuttable presumption supported by independent corroboration. Concepts whose sole support is limited to "quod erat dictum" are merely begging the question, as anyone who has ever studied classical philosophy would understand. So, while it's tempting for me to consider labeling those who ascribe to Theistically based views as Arealists, I try not to because that term should be as offensive to them as Athiest is to me. And I do try to avoid intentionally offending others because that just makes the world a more pleasant place for everyone. And that should be all the motivation anyone needs to "Do The Right Thing," and perhaps more importantly, avoid doing the wrong thing.
A short side note on that "Creator of All Things" notion. Ever heard of a guy named Craig Venter? If not, google him up. He and his team have successfully fabricated DNA out of raw chemical ingredients and programmed it to construct previously nonexistent organisms that feature aerobic respiration and cellular mitosis. Hmmmm. Guess there's more than one "Creator of Life" after all. And no, I don't think he's a god. Not surprisingly, he doesn't think he's a god either. Just a bright guy who's paying attention and not afraid of The Unknown.
*man I am just loving this new editable posts feature!
*and shuddering over my pathetic proofreading skills!
> Most people believe in dualities.
And for 'good' reason: we determine our identity through our relations with others. The phenomena of duality doesn't necessarily produce value judgements such as 'good' and 'bad'; it's just the framework within which we perceive all that we encounter, including ourselves.
I was working with a group of students a couple of years ago who were enrolled in an SAT prep course at a Christian academy. They were mostly 12-13 year olds who had a lot of questions about life, the universe and everything, and especially when these questions got me talking about subjects that were not on the official curriculum. One day, one of the students told me that he was having a hard time with the idea of Faith; he said he didn't know if he could trust Jesus. I told him that I was not a Christian, but for the sake of discussion, I was willing to concede that God had created me. Then I said that what I knew about God's creation (myself) was that I come to questions very easily, but answers not so easily at all. The student seemed to understand and relate to my answer, which taught me a lot about the power of questioning versus answering.
Most people believe in dualities. Their whole life is filled with polar opposites and they buy into the perspective. They believe in good and bad. Some like to be good, some like to be bad.
But, consider this: There is no good and bad. There is only energy, or power if you wish. Once you understand this power and come to wield it, the only thing that matters is your intention. Are you trying to help or hurt?
The universe is patiently trying to point you in the right direction. Don't buck the trend.
Subvert the dominant paradigm!
A sweet and dear friend of mine came to me this week while I was at work and gave me a piece of paper. I was so filled with joy to see her! She is amazingly kind and loving. She is 83 years old and is still completely able just only a little slower physically. She volunteers at the local hospital and helps people cross over with perfect love and comfort. She told me to read what was on the paper when I got home and to share it whenever I felt it necessary. She put the paper in my pocket and we hugged and she left. Later that night this is what I read:
"My God and God of my ancestors, accept my prayer; do not ignore my supplication. Forgive me for all the sins which I committed in my lifetime. I am abashed and ashamed of the wicked deeds which I committed. Please accept my pain and suffering as atonement and forgive my wrong-doing, for against You alone have I sinned. May it be your will, O Lord my God and God of my ancestors, that I sin no more. With Your great mercy cleanse me of my sins, but not through suffering and disease. Send a perfect healing to me and all who are stricken. Unto You, O Lord my God and God of my ancestors, I acknowledge that my life and recovery are depend upon You. May it be Your Will to heal me. Yet if You have decreed that I shall die of this affliction, may my death atone for all sins and transgressions which I have committed before You. Shelter me in the shadow of Your wings; grant me a share in your world to come. Parent of orphans and guardian of widows, protect my family, with whose soul my own soul is bound. Into Your hand I commit my Soul. You have redeemed me, O Lord God of Truth.
To everything there is a season, a time to every purpose under Heaven. A time to be Born, and a time to Die.
Mystical liberal Viddui and Shema
I acknowledge before the Source of All that life and death are not in my hands. Just as I did not choose to be born, so I do not choose to die. May it come to pass that I may be healed, but if death is my fate, then I accept it with dignity and the loving calm of the One who knows the way of all things. May my death be honorable, and may my life be a healing memory for those who know me. May my loved ones think well of me and may my memory being them joy. From all those I may have hurt, I ask forgiveness. Upon all who have hurt me, I bestow forgiveness. As a wave returns to the ocean, so shall I return to the Source from which I came.
Hear, O Israel: that which we call God is Unity Itself, All and Every are One!
A baby enters the world this closed hands; a person leave the world with open hands. The first says: The world is mine; the second: I can take nothing with me."
Delivered by Anna the Beloved
I Love You, All
May Peace & Lovingkindness be at your every grasp and if you are in absence of it, just think of me, xo! It is my every hope that the bliss and joy of lovingkindness be yours. Do know it is indeed everywhere but often hidden by a veil of darkness. I hope this is okay in this new topic and a good place to start, a gift sher'd. All goodness to You, All-forevermore.
Rock On, however you do IT, xo! Time to Play, Grown-Up Style. It's Monday morning and that could only mean one thing, right? Ha! OFF with Me to the Taper's Section. Monday is my Sunday and services are @ 9 am attentively. Click.