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The Spirituality of Atheism Options
intelfam
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 8:24:34 AM

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Still waiting for the book, PP, so cannot comment. Certainly your brief critique brings into question the dating of the event he posits. Can I take it a little further? We now know that, for example, the pronouncements of Sir Mortimer Wheeler, regarding the timing and causes for the decline of Mohenjo Daro in the Indian sub-continent are way out. Yet his chronology of the building layers and of some of the events remains in the textbooks, because the "ideas" are correct - just that the whole timeline has to be shifted somewhat. Is it possible that, if one took out the date you give, the idea might have merit? I ask because, having requested the book, I would like to think that I wouldn't be wasting all my time and could just bracket the dates. I am loath to just scan the book "in and out" at my library, the past is littered with folk like Copernicus - who pointed out the arguments for heliocentricity but then blew it around planetary orbits - yet the basic idea turned out right.




"The voice of the majority is no proof of justice." - Schiller
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 8:33:10 AM

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For my part intel I suggest you go ahead and get the book. I am off to the library this afternoon to see if they have a copy and if so I will attempt to wade through it.

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
intelfam
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 8:44:55 AM

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Total Aside
Epi wrote:
".....I also want you to know that as far as I'm concerned probably somewhere around 90% or more of people who call themselves scientists are really only technicians, they take what they learn and apply it, they have lost, or never had the spirit of science as an adventure...."

In fact, modern life and the application of scientific discoveries to improve it, rely heavily on technicians and technologists. I was one myself.


Given the fact that we seldom see the work of pure science but see that of technologists; given the consequent awe and admiration in which we hold technologists; are they the new priesthood, able to do wonders unfathomable to the majority? So is it perhaps an error to see science as in some way opposed to religion and that technology is the vehicle that causes that adversarial framing in some minds?
Dear me! Speculating again..




"The voice of the majority is no proof of justice." - Schiller
almostfreebird
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 9:16:23 AM

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Indeed, there are "three B’s" in "THE ORIGIN OF CONSCIOUSNESS IN THE BREAKDOWN OF
THE BICAMERAL MIND":

A close friend of Einstein’s has told me that many of the physicist’s greatest ideas came to him so suddenly while he was shaving that he had to move the blade of the straight razor very carefully each morning, lest he cut himself with surprise. And a well-known physicist in Britain once told Wolfgang Köhler, “We often talk about the three B’s, the Bus, the Bath, and the Bed. That is where the great discoveries are made in our science.”

Epiphileon
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 10:07:14 AM

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intelfam wrote:


5> again, put on one side by Epiphileon
Sorry Intel, I did not mean at all to set this one aside, this is the point I wanted to return to, and kick around.


Right, I can see now why I was diverted from the main OP. I was, and remain (at the moment) unconvinced about some of the (remaining) words - and also why we went off on consciousness. I was trying to figure out whether all/some of Epi's proposed theses, nailed to the virtual cathedral door, were pure assertions, rather than evidenced/argued proposals).

Quote:
1>I propose that spirituality is an experience of consciousness, and in as much as the encoded energy fields that constitute consciousness may be considered as material, in this sense, it is a physical phenomenon.

This is where I went off on one tangent! I guess that I saw this thesis as saying that spirituality was an "experience" or concept that was only available to humans. I see that much of my line of enquiry was that this appears to suggest that it is a higher function (maybe like FounDit's imagination?).
You know when I was reviewing these last night I thought the wording of 1, might be a problem, however, I was much more concerned with the conflict I saw between 3 & 5. The only point I wanted to make with the assertion of number one, and it should be a statement, rather than a proposal, was that spirituality is the result of the physiology of the brain and in no way metaphysical.

I was interested in whether it roots lay deeper in earlier behaviours/earlier pre-human primates - which, if it is archetypal, it would need to do. If it does lay in some deeper strata of brain structure or mind evolution, I was positing to myself that it may not be particular to homo sapiens and may have been present in neanderthals or earlier, common ancestor.
I do not see the necessity of archetypes being present prior to homo sapiens, much earlier than that and we'd be talking about instinctual behavior. The earliest roots of the hypothetical archetype may indeed have been developing in homo sapiens neanderthals.

If so, Thesis 2 and Thesis 4 might not hold.
If numbers 2 & 4 included the phrase "modern spirituality" would that allay the potential objection? In fact in all but 5, modern spirituality is assumed perhaps misleadingly.
[/color]


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Epiphileon
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 10:16:17 AM

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Gentleman PLEASE! Julian Jaynes is not the topic of this thread, yes, there has been a side discussion about the desirability of a discussion thread devoted to his notions, such have been kept short and do not derail the conversation, please refrain from doing so.

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
intelfam
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 11:25:49 AM

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Epiphileon wrote:
[quote=intelfam]

5> again, put on one side by Epiphileon
Sorry Intel, I did not mean at all to set this one aside, this is the point I wanted to return to, and kick around.

Right, so >5 stands
"5>I submit that there are archetypal mechanisms evolved within our mentalities to facilitate spirituality, and thus the power of the "religious experience."

and then I commented to which you responded:

I do not see the necessity of archetypes being present prior to homo sapiens, much earlier than that and we'd be talking about instinctual behavior. The earliest roots of the hypothetical archetype may indeed have been developing in homo sapiens neanderthals.


Right, as Homo sapiens neanderthalis and we h.s.s. go back to a common ancestor, then I think I was positing that, to give rise to "modern spirituality" in us and some rudimentary spirituality in neanderthalers, there must have (?) been something we shared in common. That doesn't conflict with what you say - because you talk of homo sapiens generally. But the split (even though there seems some interbreeding between us) goes back, what, 400,000 years Neanderthals and Modern Humans. So the common ancestor was likely around some time before that. That gives plenty of time for all sorts of neural connections to be encoded. You may be forgetting that I have been advocating (for the sake of a position) that archetypes are hard wired in brain structure. Quite happy to change my position, but for a commonality of brain structure in H.s.s. and H.s.n. there would have had to be a considerable time in the existence of the common ancestor for a particular brain structure to be encoded? And what might the selection pressures be, I wonder? Sorry Epi, I probably haven't thought this one through (Oxycodone time), but I'll leave it, in case there is something in there ..




"The voice of the majority is no proof of justice." - Schiller
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 11:29:24 AM

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Are we to assume challenging Jaynes unfounded notions is the same as derailing the thread... it appears so. He may well be a high priest to you, but there are many who think otherwise. May I suggest a little bit too much control is being demanded here? One is not looking for a conductor of an orchestra here.

I have ordered the book to from a library network, but it will take several weeks, by which time I may well have lost interest.

The notion that 90% of those who regard thenselves as scientist ar merely technicians is, I think, a form of elitism designed to put down. What is science but knowledge... afterall. Yes, you have the branches of science or knowledge, but the notion that the layman cannot gainfully contribute is plainly wrong. There are of course good and bad scientists.


It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
Epiphileon
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 11:34:32 AM

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percivalpecksniff wrote:
Are we to assume challenging Jaynes unfounded notions is the same as derailing the thread... it appears so. He may well be a high priest to you, but there are many who think otherwise. May i suggest a little bit too much control is being demanded here? One iss not looking for a conductor of an orchestra here.


No Jaynes is not the topic of this conversation.

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 11:51:19 AM

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So what is the topic then? If you are using his work as your bible, then is it really possible to leave him out of it? My comments on his work were on the substance of a section of his views, and not on him. Or perhaps you are starting a new thread.

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
Epiphileon
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 12:10:51 PM

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percivalpecksniff wrote:
So what is the topic then? If you are using his work as your bible, .


You just really are not paying attention are you? You might want to review my opinion of Jaynes work.

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 12:24:29 PM

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Nice put down. No thank you. I paid attention alright and even read up on him and supplied constructive, albiet critical, comments. That is how one learns... by being challenged and them conceding or fighting ones corner. Done it all my life Perhaps you should read my comments and digest them.

Are you looking for acolytes or strong debate? Don't worry I will not stay the course since I have little respect for his... Jaynes views.

I hope you receive vigorous challenges to your notions otherwise it gets to sugary and dull and a patting on the back. Enjoy yourself.



It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
NancyLee
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 5:07:41 PM

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Its true what "they" say about discussing religion and politics. It's a tough proposition...

I never thought of Jaynes as an atheist, nor thought his book in any way promoted
atheism. He did discuss why we had many gods and then thought One God was better.

To me he believed human mentality had to change for survival purposes after the 1613 B.C.
Thera,(Santorini), volcano eruption . Look it up, ten times worse than Krakatoa.

Intelligence, cleverness, and most other human traits didn't change, conscious awareness
came along so that we could make faster decisions and so that we could lie.

People don't really do anything with their conscious minds. You learn and practice
doing things like driving a car or playing the piano and do it on automatic. Your
consciousness kicks in if a decision needs to be made. You can't really play the
piano if you have to tell each finger where to go consciously. Personally, if I am
driving and thinking about something else, I often tend to straight, on automatic I call it.

Today we pretty much call it the subconscious.

I just wanted consciousness defined better for this discussion.

Best to all,
NancyLee







Learning is its own reward, and it's fun too!
Epiphileon
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 5:34:19 PM

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intelfam wrote:
Epiphileon wrote:
[quote=intelfam]
I do not see the necessity of archetypes being present prior to homo sapiens, much earlier than that and we'd be talking about instinctual behavior. The earliest roots of the hypothetical archetype may indeed have been developing in homo sapiens neanderthals.


Right, as Homo sapiens neanderthalis and we h.s.s. go back to a common ancestor, then I think I was positing that, to give rise to "modern spirituality" in us and some rudimentary spirituality in neanderthalers, there must have (?) been something we shared in common. That doesn't conflict with what you say - because you talk of homo sapiens generally. But the split (even though there seems some interbreeding between us) goes back, what, 400,000 years Neanderthals and Modern Humans. So the common ancestor was likely around some time before that. That gives plenty of time for all sorts of neural connections to be encoded. You may be forgetting that I have been advocating (for the sake of a position) that archetypes are hard wired in brain structure.
I agree entirely that the archetype will have a genetically transmitted, specific architecture within the brain.

Quite happy to change my position, but for a commonality of brain structure in H.s.s. and H.s.n. there would have had to be a considerable time in the existence of the common ancestor for a particular brain structure to be encoded?
I believe this be a valid observation, although I think that what may have been minimally necessary prior to homo sapiens, was perhaps the components that led to a archetype for spirituality, that may have come into existence independently in HSN and HSS. I'm sorry but I'm going to have to leave it at that for the moment, I think I need to restate my notions on this hypothetical construct of an archetype as well as pull in, what are currently aspects I missed, that I can't even delineate clearly yet. (It is a very weird and difficult thing to describe, but as the result of the part of this thread when we were actively discussing the issue, there were distinct inklings of other aspects that needed to be included, sort of like, buzzing around? the table on which the concept was being constructed. I need to recall those and take another shot at a definition. That makes sense right?)

And what might the selection pressures be, I wonder? Sorry Epi, I probably haven't thought this one through (Oxycodone time), but I'll leave it, in case there is something in there ..
Oh yes there most definitely is, however in the meantime could you comment on these parts of my earlier reply....
You said; This is where I went off on one tangent! I guess that I saw this thesis as saying that spirituality was an "experience" or concept that was only available to humans. I see that much of my line of enquiry was that this appears to suggest that it is a higher function (maybe like FounDit's imagination?).
You know when I was reviewing these last night I thought the wording of 1, might be a problem, however, I was much more concerned with the conflict I saw between 3 & 5. The only point I wanted to make with the assertion of number one, and it should be a statement, rather than a proposal, was that spirituality is the result of the physiology of the brain and in no way metaphysical.

you said;
This is where I went off on one tangent! I guess that I saw this thesis as saying that spirituality was an "experience" or concept that was only available to humans. I see that much of my line of enquiry was that this appears to suggest that it is a higher function (maybe like FounDit's imagination?). If so, Thesis 2 and Thesis 4 might not hold.
If numbers 2 & 4 included the phrase "modern spirituality" would that allay the potential objection? In fact in all but 5, modern spirituality is assumed perhaps misleadingly.


If you want to see this in context it is from Thursday, October 13, 2011 10:07:14 AM



Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 5:37:33 PM

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Yes Jaynes was an avowed atheist and of course that influenced his thinking..... why would it not?


Nancy Leee said: 'People don't really do anything with their conscious minds.'


Ok take reading as just one example... do you study and read with your conscious mind? Of course you do.


It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
NancyLee
Posted: Thursday, October 13, 2011 6:18:29 PM

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percivalpecksniff wrote:
Yes Jaynes was an avowed atheist and of course that influenced his thinking..... why would it not?

Nancy Lee said: 'People don't really do anything with their conscious minds.'

Ok take reading as just one example... do you study and read with your conscious mind? Of course you do.




I was not in any way influenced by this book to change my belief in God.
Personally I feel "hard wired" in my belief in the Majesty of God and His Universe.

No I don't believe we do read with our conscious minds. Our conscious mind decides
we will read and pay attention and then we start. I know I do not look at every
word consciously, that would take forever!

Learning is its own reward, and it's fun too!
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011 4:54:49 AM

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Nancy you said: ...'Our conscious mind decides we will read and pay attention and then we start. I know I do not look at every word consciously, that would take forever!'


What about multi-tasking? Indeed you do look at every word consciously... you just do it at incredible speed! You agree we consciously decide to read, right? Yes the brain has the ability to absorb without our miming in our mind each word, but as soon as there is a spelling misstake we are immediately aware of are we not? If the grammar is poor we are conscious of it as we read, so how can it be that we are reading unconsciously? What if we are studying a complicated piece for an exam?

I wash my dishes at the sink and listen to the radio at the same time while I occasionally glance out of the window, all at one and the same time, and I see to my satisfaction that the plate is clean. All this is done consciously and I am aware at every stage what it is I am doing and hope to achieve, and oh there is Mrs Jones from no 7 walking by on the pavement... I wave conscious of her sudden appearance while I continue to wash up, listen to the radio and wonder at the same time whether it will rain today. Damn did I switch off the immersion?

Because the brain has the ability to work on many levels at one and the same time, and assign what measure of attention it needs to in order to achieve its objectives, that in no way means it is not conscious of its functions. We are able to consciously multi-task and when we are ready, we decide, consciously, to stop reading.

When I drive I do not do it sub-consciously do I? Despite my car radio playing my favourite song, thereby affecting my emotions, and noticing a big black cloud in the sky as my passenger chats in my left ear, I am alert to the fact a car is approaching a junction to my right and that a little boy up ahead to my left is about to cross the road. None of this is done sub-consciously... I am at all times aware, and to use a phrase of Jaynes 'aware that I am aware, and of my responsibility to be a ware. Whoops I made an error that should be aware, not a ware... I consciously noted that.'


It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
Epiphileon
Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011 5:37:25 AM

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Epiphileon wrote:
Julian Jaynes is not the topic of this thread, yes, there has been a side discussion about the desirability of a discussion thread devoted to his notions, such have been kept short and do not derail the conversation, please refrain from doing so.


Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
percivalpecksniff
Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011 5:57:30 AM

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Epiphileon wrote:
Julian Jaynes is not the topic of this thread, yes, there has been a side discussion about the desirability of a discussion thread devoted to his notions, such have been kept short and do not derail the conversation, please refrain from doing so.



Let us not get into strawman arguments. You accuse me of derailing the thread which started off as the oxymoron 'The Spiritualism of the Atheist' then along the way you got off thread and introduced the subject of consciousness. It is you who derailed the thread I am on tune on both subjects now... what is your problem? So now you seek control on how long a post should be.


Another thing ... it would help if you simplified your English. The art of good English is to state your point in as few words as possible and in clear unambiguous language.



It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
Epiphileon
Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011 9:55:20 AM

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Oh Peter but you are tiring, sometimes I think that is your entire point, intrude in discussions you have no agreement with, and then continuously fire off the same objections you've stated on numerous occasions, to prevent them from being discussed. The topic of consciousness came up as a result of FounDit's argument concerning the hypothetical construct of an archetype for spirituality, one of the points in the OP. We discussed it to the point it was relevant to the OP and then moved on. Your dismissal of the original thesis of the OP as an oxymoron, only shows that you have known what the topic was all along, it also shows that you've dismissed any validity in the concept, so what is your point of being in this discussion?
At one point most of the active, constructive, contributors agreed that the basic concept was sound, and to move on to the discussion of the notion of an evolutionary concept of an archetype for spirituality. I have no doubt of your intelligence Peter, so I find it exceedingly difficult to believe that if you've read the entire thread, that you could possibly be ignorant of what the discussion is about. You do strongly disagree with it, we know that you've made that clear. Do you somehow see it as your duty to prevent any discussion of things that you do not agree with? It is fairly clear Peter that you are being obstructive to this discussion, and your personal insults seriously put your motivation in question. When you claimed that you didn't know the topic, as well asserted that I thought Julian Jaynes and his work, represented something on the order of a deity and his holy scripture, my statement of you not having been paying attention was an observation, I'm sorry if you saw it as a put down, but given that you obviously know the topic, and that I have been openly critical of Jaynes hypothesis on the evolutionary time-line of consciousness, what other conclusion could I draw. I have not accused you of seeking acolytes, nor do I post in your threads that I think your conversations are ridiculous, totally baseless, of any other of the insulting terms you've used numerous times in this thread, towards myself and others involved in the conversation. Your last dig about simplifying my language, really Peter, complex idea's, at times, require the use of very exact terminology for accurate description. I don't understand why, when you are in such complete disagreement with the fundamental notions central to this discussion, that you are here at all.

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percivalpecksniff
Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011 10:33:34 AM

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As to being tiring, well we respond to each other in different ways, and of course you are entitled to your feelings and I bear you no ill will for them. I stick to my point about simplifying the language and it was not an insult but a plea for more readable comments. I well understand it, but it makes for tiring reading and the comments would be much more effective if, in my opinion, simpler language, not simpler arguments, were used.

I consider my comments on the subject of Jaynes theories and consciousness to be relevant, and to do the service of providing an alternative to your own stance. I am not here just to spoil, and I do not expect or need agreement.

Without challenge there is little merit to a discussion, and of course it is true I am broadly in opposition to the notions posited here.

So the subject is confined to atheistic spirituality now and in development... ok... which in normal terms is an oxymoron, but I have repeatedly agreed elsewhere that in a narrow sense I believe the atheist has the right to refer to himself as spiritual. The phrase 'Atheistic Spirituality' does not sit well, as it is a term that at first glance appears as a contradiction in terms.

Ill drop the consciousness thing and Jaynes, and if I feel a need to comment I will attempt to keep it narrow.

I am conscious that the nature of consciousness and Jaynes is a hobby horse of yours and that you gain great pleasure from discussing these matters... I'll do you the favour of slowing down.


It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. Aristotle
nowherenothere
Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011 11:15:47 AM

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When this Spirituality of Atheism thread initially started my first thoughts were of Buddhism and yoga, and the works of Jung, Descartes, Sartre, Ayn Rand and Joseph Campbell. I also thought of L. Ron Hubbard's work too. It's been an interesting discussion, mostly intellectual and cerebral, with a study group for Julian Jaynes work spun off from it.



Forgiving is Love, Love is For Giving.
intelfam
Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011 2:17:54 PM

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nowherenothere wrote:
When this Spirituality of Atheism thread initially started my first thoughts were of Buddhism and yoga, and the works of Jung, Descartes, Sartre, Ayn Rand and Joseph Campbell. I also thought of L. Ron Hubbard's work too. It's been an interesting discussion, mostly intellectual and cerebral, with a study group for Julian Jaynes work spun off from it.



Certainly, I thought Jung might run further than he did in the discussion, he being an interest of mine. Buddhism in the stripped-down form presented by Watts, based on Zen etc. does, to my ignorant mind, offer a route for "spiritual development" without a commitment to any religion. However, I think the methods available to atheists for developing spirituality may be well later (if this discussion continues) - we still have to establish some more basic ideas - I would imagine!
Sartre and Joseph Campbell I have some familiarity with but I confess to finding Ayn Rand hard to stomach - but that's just me, I guess. Thanks for posting nowherenothere, but looking at that reading list, maybe you should post more often Applause

"The voice of the majority is no proof of justice." - Schiller
intelfam
Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011 2:25:54 PM

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Epiphileon Thursday, October 13, 2011 10:34:19 PM wrote:

Oh yes there most definitely is, however in the meantime could you comment on these parts of my earlier reply....


I'm really sorry Epi, but with the interpolations and tangents, I can't establish to which things you wanted some comment directed. A big ask, I know, but can you copy/paste or something so that it's nearer the top of the pile, please?



"The voice of the majority is no proof of justice." - Schiller
Epiphileon
Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011 8:10:58 PM

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intelfam wrote:

I'm really sorry Epi, but with the interpolations and tangents, I can't establish to which things you wanted some comment directed. A big ask, I know, but can you copy/paste or something so that it's nearer the top of the pile, please?


No problem Intel;
You said;
This is where I went off on one tangent! I guess that I saw this thesis as saying that spirituality was an "experience" or concept that was only available to humans. I see that much of my line of enquiry was that this appears to suggest that it is a higher function (maybe like FounDit's imagination?).
You know when I was reviewing these last night I thought the wording of 1, might be a problem, however, I was much more concerned with the conflict I saw between 3 & 5. The only point I wanted to make with the assertion of number one, and it should be a statement, rather than a proposal, was that spirituality is the result of the physiology of the brain and in no way metaphysical.

you said;
This is where I went off on one tangent! I guess that I saw this thesis as saying that spirituality was an "experience" or concept that was only available to humans. I see that much of my line of enquiry was that this appears to suggest that it is a higher function (maybe like FounDit's imagination?). If so, Thesis 2 and Thesis 4 might not hold.
If numbers 2 & 4 included the phrase "modern spirituality" would that allay the potential objection? In fact in all but 5, modern spirituality is assumed perhaps misleadingly.

The above underlined sections are what I was referring to, I just wanted to clean up the phrasing of the these points to remove any ambiguity. here are the points in their original phrasing for reference,
Quote:
1>I propose that spirituality is an experience of consciousness, and in as much as the encoded energy fields that constitute consciousness may be considered as material, in this sense, it is a physical phenomenon.

2>I would assert that the involvement of both reason and emotion is a necessary condition.

3>I would propose that the experience is likely only in those with a deeply examined, deeply held, and cultivated real time experience of their Fundamental Interpretation of Reality (FIR), Christians call this "walking in the Spirit.

4>I would propose/state, that as any consciously held FIR must deal, in some manner, with the fundamental question, "Why are there things that are, rather than no things?" That a personal apprehension of the immeasurably immense, and eventual unknowableness of all of "what is, has been, or is to come", leads to an essential humility in the resultant relationship, and this is a characteristic of spirituality.

5>I submit that there are archetypal mechanisms evolved within our mentalities to facilitate spirituality, and thus the power of the "religious experience."

6>I would hazard to hypothesize that those who are spiritual would be seen as essentially good people, with compassion and concern for the state of the human race, and for the individuals thereof.

And as I said recently, I think 3 needs to be set aside until there is more clarity on 5, and 6 has been discarded as being highly suspect of being a result of RCG (Rose Colored Glasses) syndrome.

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
Epiphileon
Posted: Monday, October 17, 2011 9:45:31 AM

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I had hoped to continue with this discussion with more thorough examination of the notion of an archetype for spirituality; however, as I considered this I realized that this term "archetype for behavior", is not a formal term,* and I have not successfully conveyed what I meant by it. Therefore, I am going to hold off on further discussion here until I bring up the term in another thread.

*That is, as far as I know it is not, particularly within fields dealing with the evolution of mind and behavior.

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
Peaceward
Posted: Monday, October 17, 2011 1:46:22 PM
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Small remark please,in The Bible is said; God is The Spirit. So a believer in God should be spiritual person by definition but not obligatory factually, and only way to define spirituality in man is as it said; you shall know them by their deeds.
For me the spirituality is "a state of mind when one does not cling to things" as long as he clings to things there are rather things than no things. I think that spirituality is a problem of attitude and relation, even if spirituality is the result of brain's physiology.

Here's my atheistic spirituality

What goes around, comes around.
intelfam
Posted: Tuesday, October 18, 2011 7:31:42 AM

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Peaceward wrote:

For me the spirituality is "a state of mind when one does not cling to things" as long as he clings to things there are rather things than no things.

Akin to Buddhism (and some forms of Hinduism, I believe). If I have it right?

I think that spirituality is a problem of attitude and relation, even if spirituality is the result of brain's physiology.

Are you saying that spirituality is not something one either has or hasn't (in a vacuum) so to speak; but that spirituality is only present in terms of one's relationship to something else? It would then be that, one "shows" one's spirituality (to an outsider, for example) by the way you relate to god/gods/the material world/other people?

Here's my atheistic spirituality


"The voice of the majority is no proof of justice." - Schiller
Peaceward
Posted: Tuesday, October 18, 2011 9:47:19 AM
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Hello, intelfam
Could not to reply earlier because of already regular suspension of my account, don't know why it is told that my limit for a day is reached, I suspect someone cannot stand my comments and report on them as spam, sorry if I wrong but what I should think else. Didn't intend and don't any one to offend without reason.

I don't know in fact akin to what and do know that we perceive anything with most sharpness while paying more attention to, so to say the matter is in the focus.

I don't think that spirituality somewhere there..it is said "The kingdom of God is within you", yeah I believe that spirituality is only can be present in relationship and mostly to himself, I think that is hardly possible to show spirituality itself..it is state of mind, the one possibly could see only the deeds of spiritual man and rather no deeds, because he does not cling to things any longer, I meant one God, God is The Spirit so single Spirit single God.

What goes around, comes around.
Wanderer
Posted: Tuesday, October 18, 2011 10:52:34 AM

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I had thought that I would post this thought a few weeks back but, I resisted the urge because I was afraid that it wasn't On Topic, but since reading Peaceward's post I thought better of it. I do think that spirituality is only present in terms of one's relationship to something else.

What is the difference between emotions and spirt? In a religious sense spirit is a state of communion with God. When our spiritual nature is awakened one transcends the usual state of identification with a worldly existence. The awareness of our own existence changes as well. We realize we are spiritual beings going through physical realities. Emotions are feelings related to our worldly life. They give us the feelings of happiness or unhappiness, and they are related to our attitudes. In a state of emotion, we identify even more with our physical senses, mind and intellect. Being highly emotional makes us further entrenched in our worldly existence and increases our awareness about our own existence. That is why being lead by emotions takes us further away from God. That is how I see "spiritual atheism" as defined here. We all feel emotion at great scenes of worldly vistas or in times of deep stress, but that shouldn't be confused with spiritual communion. It is a response to the stimulus but it isn't spirituality.


Peaceward's post made me consider the different things that can be classified as spiritual. There are the elemental spirits (earth, air, fire, water, etc.), thought forms (spirits that occur via thoughts and feelings which are not your own but the spirits), poltergeist, animals, fairies, deceased (ghost), ancestors, mythical, angels, deities, dark entities, orbs, and light. None of these definitions fit with your ideas of spirituality, to me.
Epiphileon
Posted: Tuesday, October 18, 2011 12:31:45 PM

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Hi Wanderer, I understand that some people will insist that spirituality is a word that can only have a metaphysical referent; however, and obviously I disagree, in my OP I referenced the following...
Quote:
spir·i·tu·al (spr-ch-l)
adj.
1. Of, relating to, consisting of, or having the nature of spirit; not tangible or material.
2. Of, concerned with, or affecting the soul.

soul (sl)
n.
1. The animating and vital principle in humans, credited with the faculties of thought, action, and emotion and often conceived as an immaterial entity.


The key point there is underlined, if, as from an atheistic view, one rejects the concept that the soul is ephemeral, and is actually consciousness, then under that condition, it seems to me the term still fits.

There is also from my OP these points to consider...

Quote:
2>I would assert that the involvement of both reason and emotion is a necessary condition.

3>I would propose that the experience is likely only in those with a deeply examined, deeply held, and cultivated real time experience of their Fundamental Interpretation of Reality (FIR), Christians call this "walking in the Spirit.


So in other words not just an emotional response to a stimulus. I believe somewhere in the thread I also mentioned that one who was exhibiting atheistic spirituality would have derived a system of morals and ethics on the basis of understanding their individual relationship to all that is.
In any case no one was able to come up with a better word that describes the phenomenon as well as spirituality. I was resistant to the notion at first as well, one of the reasons I brought it up here was because I thought, perhaps I had overlooked some other word, that is apparently no the case, and when I get back to being able to continue to develop the notion, I actually anticipate that usage of this word will be beneficial.

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
FounDit
Posted: Tuesday, October 18, 2011 12:32:21 PM

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Wanderer wrote:

What is the difference between emotions and spirt?....
(Emotion) It is a response to the stimulus but it isn't spirituality.


Peaceward's post made me consider the different things that can be classified as spiritual. There are the elemental spirits (earth, air, fire, water, etc.), thought forms (spirits that occur via thoughts and feelings which are not your own but the spirits), poltergeist, animals, fairies, deceased (ghost), ancestors, mythical, angels, deities, dark entities, orbs, and light. None of these definitions fit with your ideas of spirituality, to me.


I submit there is no difference between emotion and spirit; they both are reactions of the imagination.

I would agree with you that emotions are responses to stimulus. Therefore, emotions do not exist as things per se. They are not items we possess, but merely reactions we have to stimulus, whether external or internal. After all, we can have an "emotional" reaction to a simple thought that we create for ourselves.

Similarly, spirituality is created in the mind, and we react to its thought presence. Classification of things, i.e. earth, air, fire, etc. as spirits does, indeed, not make them spirits, its just what we call them. Humans are masters of playing a game called, "It ain't what it is, it's what we SAY it is!" (also known as political correctness...*S*)

None of these thing could exist unless we give them existence in our imagination. Re-read your second paragraph and preface each sentence with, "In our imagination.." and you get a clearer understanding of my point.






A great many people will think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices. ~ William James ~
FounDit
Posted: Tuesday, October 18, 2011 12:56:24 PM

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Epi,

The closest I can come to the word you were looking for as a substitute, if you will, for spirituality is the Taoist term, "Oneness". Its basically the same as it consists of an awareness of connection with the Universe and all that is in it.

I didn't mention it before because it doesn't connect with western ideas of spirituality, so I thought it best to go with that word. However, spirituality seems conjure up too much in the way of Organized Religion type thinking.

From an atheistic point of view, it seems to me that Oneness is the best option, but that's just my view. As it springs from consciousness/awareness, it eliminates the "Soul" aspect as an immaterial entity.

Morality would consist primarily of understanding the need for consideration and respect each person desires. Therefore, these two things form the foundation. The Golden Rule: if one desires respect and consideration, first give it to others.





A great many people will think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices. ~ William James ~
almostfreebird
Posted: Tuesday, October 18, 2011 1:24:12 PM

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intelfam
Posted: Wednesday, October 19, 2011 6:53:22 AM

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FounDit wrote:
Epi,

The closest I can come to the word you were looking for as a substitute, if you will, for spirituality is the Taoist term, "Oneness". Its basically the same as it consists of an awareness of connection with the Universe and all that is in it.

I didn't mention it before because it doesn't connect with western ideas of spirituality, so I thought it best to go with that word. However, spirituality seems conjure up too much in the way of Organized Religion type thinking.

From an atheistic point of view, it seems to me that Oneness is the best option, but that's just my view. As it springs from consciousness/awareness, it eliminates the "Soul" aspect as an immaterial entity.

Morality would consist primarily of understanding the need for consideration and respect each person desires. Therefore, these two things form the foundation. The Golden Rule: if one desires respect and consideration, first give it to others.


You may have something FounDit. I have been wondering whether the word spirituality was free enough to shake off the fact that it has been used in the West pretty much solely by christian theologians and comes with a lot of luggage about how is should manifest and what it contains.

As such, it is probably conceived of, very ethnocentrically - a sort of "We invented the word in the west, so it means only what I, as a westerner, say it means" - which is a bit of a put down for the millions of buddhists, Hindus etc. The word "should" be big enough to include the experience of eastern and south-eastern schools, but I am beginning to doubt it - or at least thinking that our christian luggage is going to cause us to see it in a certain way. Because it has been the pretty much sole preseve of christians in the west, it is likely they feel possessive about it.

On the other hand, Epi is trying to suggest that (quite correctly in my view) it is possible for someone who does not subscribe in toto, or at all, to christianity can be capable of this experience. I realise that he is attempting to extend this to atheists but still, he is marking out the fact that one does not have to be a christian to be spiritual. And maybe this campaign is worth continuing with, if it opens the eyes of some to the fact of other belief systems and accord them their due respect.

The one problem I can see with using a word (and its attendant concept) from another belief system, is whether we run foul of the same problem - it belongs to somebody else. I started an off-line/pm conversation with RubyMoon about daoism/taoism - and it has, in my view, some useful concepts - useful enough that some revered christian spiritual writers have accorded it with respect. The East has a heritage of pondering the issue of religious experience for a long as - actually longer than - the west. It has a lot to say about the journey of the human "soul" without getting bogged down in whether my god is your god, or even whether we can ever hope to know much about the divine - some eastern schools seem to offer a path of spirituality without a god or gods at all.





"The voice of the majority is no proof of justice." - Schiller
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