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Religious views and why!


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#1 Marleyahu

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Posted 19 December 2017 - 09:32 PM

Hey everyone. I've always been really curious about different religions. As a little bit of background, I grew raised Christian, my mother married a man who practiced Judaism and then they adopted 2 children who were Hindu from India. I have had a very different religious experience to say the least because we practiced all of the religions in the house hold. 

 

I strayed away from Christianity around the age of 20. I would say that I actually strayed away before then as I stopped attending church and stopped practicing the religion around the age of 16 but I still always considered myself to be a Christian. Why I changed my views at 20 was because of a philosophy class I had taken during college. 

 

Learning a lot about western philosophy and finding that most of the great philosophers in the world do not really practice any religion was fascinating to me. This class focused a lot of the philosophy of religion and taught a lot about how these religions were started and how they changed over the years in to the current forms practiced today. The religions that truly fascinated me were the predominantly Asian religions. Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism in particular.

 

I strongly agree with Buddhism in many ways but I myself have never been able to fully practice Buddhism due to the sobriety and celibacy clauses in it. I feel that if you are going to practice a certain religion that you should do so to the best of your ability and try to incorporate all aspects of the religion into your life. I still read up a lot about Buddhism and thoroughly enjoy things like meditation and even practice kundalini however I just cannot call myself a Buddhist. 

 

During this philosophy course I began to consider myself a Taoist which is kind of a branch off of Confucianism. For those of you who do not know about Taoism, the Tao literally means "way" or "path" in Chinese. Taoism is the focus on your "way" or "path" through life. The great Confucian philosopher Lao Tzu wrote the Tao Te Ching which is really the only book that means anything to the religion. It is a very short manuscript and can be read from front to back in about a day that has many great teachings and thoughts. If you cannot read Chinese you have to find the best translation of it that you can and I have read about 3 different translations at this point. What I have gathered from it is that we are all on our own path through life that is decided by us and the decision that we make throughout this life.

 

Lao Tzu basically thought that he was in control of his own destiny. That there was no plan that a higher being had for him but instead he could control his own life and based on the decisions he made about certain things is what directed him down one path or another. He neither confirmed nor discredited the fact that there is a god, instead just accepting that there is something that has created everything. To me that something would be god. A god in the sense that it created the universe but it doesn't have a grand plan for everything. This god could be the many different forms but no one knows for sure. To the Christians it is something that created man in his image, to scientists this god would the the big bang, to to Native Americans this is Mother nature. There are many different ideologies about how the universe was formed but whatever formed it would be the god of everything regardless of what it is.

 

This is the religion I have chosen. It seems to be the easiest for me to understand and also the most comfortable for me to follow. I find solace in the idea that I create my own destiny. I enjoy thinking about many different aspects of the universe and this religion allows me to do so while still having something to believe in. Anyone who wants to read the story of Lao Tzu I strongly encourage it. He was a man that wrote a book that an entire religion was founded on, based on the things he learned and thought of through life, and then disappeared over night. There are many different stories of him but they are all truly a fascinating and it is great religion! Thanks for reading!

 

Please tell me about your ideologies.


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#2 tuftygrasses

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Posted 19 December 2017 - 11:29 PM

I was cristened protestant but it wasnt really important to us. We had bible stories in school. My gran talked to me about death and the possiblity or not of an after life. She was always honest and shared her experience of loosing her faith with me. High school religion was horrible. We protested and the minister stopped comming. 

 

I had always been curious about the universe. When I left primary school I wanted to be an astronaught. I was bought a Steven Hawkin book and the first thing I wanted to know was about the egg shaped expanding universe. The space outside of the universe..is that god? No one could say. 

 

In my 20s I found yoga, it was a type mixed with the philosphy from guru granth sahib, the Sikh text and talked about the universe and all that. It had my attention. But the school of yoga was a bit of a cult and didnt encorange asking unanswerable questions so I left and went back to the source. I went back to old Vedism, pre religion. There are some beautiful texts on the nature of existence. Interestingly, ideas from 1000s of years ago that have striking similarity to the modern big bang theory. And to what we are learning about matter and energy being kind of all the same stuff showing different aspects of its self. 

 

I realised i was asking the wrong questions about the universe. You cant just fly to the edge and see whos there :) The old texts and new science are saying theres no such thing as straight! 

 

The stuff about the unity and infinate nature of everything, going always in cycles, is comforting to me, and makes enough sense to keep learning :)


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#3 Alder Logs

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Posted 19 December 2017 - 11:30 PM

I have learned and endeavored to believe nothing.   The great thing about the Eastern modes (I balk at using either "religion" or "philosophy" for my operative terms) is that many point to experience as the way of knowing.  Since experience is a movement in being, it is never static.   No book or set of beliefs will corral what is.   It is, as you might agree, a way; ultimately, the Way.   For lack of a better word, we might even call it, "Tao."   Being what is, it certainly doesn't matter what any person calls it.  

 

For me, what might be termed, "the spiritual path," has pointed at one idea.   It is not a new idea, nor is it an exclusive one.   It is this: Know Thyself. 

 

This is the key to either the remnant or central truth of most any religion or philosophy we might name, no matter how far the translators and interpreters of these have skewed them from this central mission.   Which of the various disciplines are most suited to the mission, I won't offer a guess.   To my experience, they start to become unnecessary when one directs oneself toward his/her self realization. 

 

The closer I, as an expression of what is, come to unearthing the learned and habitual false notions of self, the more drawn I become to any master or scripture which I find resonant with what is known as true within my own heart.    I eschew belief and pursue the present knowing of what is.   I honor Lao Tsu, as I honor so many since, as well as many current embodiments of realization.   

 

The father of one such master I have known in this lifetime said this:

 

"To be born into one of the world's great religions is a great blessing.  To die in one, a great curse."

~Sri Hans Ji Maharaj

 

I also honor the mushroom and psychedelics for what these were to me in their time and place.     They were a true window to opening vistas, but they closed as they were for me, round trip excursions.   They were a means to a seeing that I had to find without them, ultimately.    I cannot be other than grateful for their helping me onward on my way.  

 

It is often said by masters about solving the problem of ego identity, of using things like imperfect words or means: 

 

You get a thorn in your foot.  You take another thorn and use it to remove the one in your foot.   Then you throw both thorns away.

 


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#4 Marleyahu

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 08:57 AM

What a great post Alder! Thank you for your insight into your way of thinking. By the way I'm loving the picture of Ganesha, one of my favorite Hindi lords.


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#5 Skywatcher

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 10:01 AM

I have explored many religious views over my life, even submerged myself into them for periods. I was raised protestant. methodist, baptist, and spiritualist. We went to church some times, but were never forced, and from the start I was taught it was not about going to a church and swallowing every word without question, but a choice if you found it comforting. Church did not answer my questions and only confused me with contradiction.

 

The spiritualism was what seemed most real to me, as it allowed for things we cannot see, and embraced the idea of the individual essence, or soul, being un restricted by a single lifetime or the boundaries of the physical. It acknowledged that everyone had talents, not necessarily the same.

As a child, I felt and saw things, and thought everyone did. I was not told the usual "oh that's silly stuff". My empathic overload was treated as real, and fortunately. I had other members of the family with some knowledge of this, who taught me ways to deal with, and turn off the flow, not of myself, when I needed to.

 

I discovered psychedelics at 16, and eventually was introduced to mescaline and the idea that this was not just random visual amusement, but a pathway from which to learn from non human teachers. I embraced native american teachings, as they seemed closest to my own experience of this world as a living entity, and life co-habitating with many beings , both corporal and non. 

 

Meditation and embracing my own intuitive senses have allowed me to grow and learn. I would have to say at this point, animism is the closest belief system I follow, as it has no rules, and simply accepts what is. I really do not fully embace any, and none of the current religious belief systems, and find the old ways and at times paganism seem most in sync with what I feel and how I find ways to respect my living earth, and the many energies, and entities that it holds, or at times, simply hosts awhile......

 

I see my life as a continuation. I am still learning, I am content to have respect and kindness as the keystones to build from. I do not fear death as I see this as another journey,. ...

I don't feel like I need to have all "the answers".


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#6 Guy1298

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 09:47 PM

I'm seemingly a buddhist. Too much time spent considering "not-self". Still, I don't buy into a lot of Buddhism, and my ideas are obviously influenced by psychedelic-use. It's like psychedelically infused Buddhism fixated on not-self. Sometimes I think I'm tricking myself... sometimes I'm sure I'm not. 


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#7 Soliver

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Posted 20 December 2017 - 11:18 PM

I stopped trying to put it in a box eons ago.  It's human nature to form collectives of thought,but it's sadly my nature to poke holes in things; logic and belief make poor bedfellows. 

 

All we know for sure is what we don't know, which is why I'm drinking beer and posting on the 'topia later than I should be on a work night ... I may get hit by a goddamn meteorite in my sleep, and this is what I want to be doing right now ... not a "live like there's no tomorrow" construct, but a "live like there's a very, very small chance there's no tomorrow," which leads to several small bad decisions instead of several large bad decisions.

 

Live, die.  Belief is something completely separate, and while it's nice to believe that belief makes a difference once we assume room temperature, there's nothing concrete in human history to suggest that's the case. 

 

Good things happen to bad people all the time.  At least I hope so.

 

:)

 

soliver


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#8 Alder Logs

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 12:57 AM

If I believed myself to be some thing that eventually assumes room temperature, I would start looking more closely at my beliefs.  


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#9 Marleyahu

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 01:14 AM

I stopped trying to put it in a box eons ago. It's human nature to form collectives of thought,but it's sadly my nature to poke holes in things; logic and belief make poor bedfellows.

soliver

I tend to try and poke the same holes which is why I like Taoism so much. It doesn't seem to be much of a religion in the sense that it is a belief system you have to live by but more like a set of moral principles that one man felt it noble to live by. So as I read into it I felt it would be a very noble endeavor for me to try and live my life by these same principles and by putting these same methods of thinking to use.

Edited by Marleyahu, 21 December 2017 - 01:14 AM.

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#10 Spooner

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 01:22 AM

If I believed myself to be some thing that eventually assumes room temperature, I would start looking more closely at my beliefs.  

 

Yeah, confining beliefs to actual experiences in our lives is a bitch.


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#11 Marleyahu

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 01:24 AM


Yet most of us seem to do it all to often

Edited by Marleyahu, 21 December 2017 - 01:25 AM.


#12 Alder Logs

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 10:50 AM

It could be that identification with the body and/or mind is an unrecognized but widespread belief.   This is not to say that we are not the body/mind, but that so focused in belief, we come to a severe limitation of being.


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#13 Soliver

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 03:03 PM

 

while it's nice to believe that belief makes a difference once we assume room temperature, there's nothing concrete in human history to suggest that's the case. 

 

 

If I believed myself to be some thing that eventually assumes room temperature, I would start looking more closely at my beliefs.  

 

And there it is - short of those pesky, concrete "facts," it's all a matter of beliefs, which are simultaneously subjective and objective, hence our habit of trying to fit 'em all in a box that makes some logical consistency from something that defies any and all logic.

 

I'd like to believe that when I shuck this mortal coil that my spirit will blah and etc., just as I'd like to believe in a benign force that governs the universe.  I sort-of do, on a good day.  Then again, I sort of know that's me not wanting to believe that - maybe - I'm completely insignificant and that the spark or 'spirit' inside me is no less amazing than the ones occupying those carpenter bees I poisoned this past spring, and if you go down that road with any serious intent ... therein lies madness.

 

Those fuckin' bees / wood bores / whatever you wanna call 'em drill perfect, vertical 1.2 cm holes.  I glory in their existence while wiping them off the face of the property.  Do their wood bore souls fly up?  Will there be a reckoning?  Will I be reborn as a wood bore? 

 

Is that pork roast thawed out yet?  Can I name it "Alder?" 

 

These are all excellent questions; no one I've heard from has the answers.  Until then, I call 'bullshit.'  The rest of what we consider 'belief' is stimulus-response and ego...

 

[Direct Link]

 

:)

 

soliver


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#14 Myc

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 03:16 PM

It's kind of a weird thing........

I don't believe in religion because I met god - "personally" - once. It didn't tell me to come tell any of youanything.

Therefore, I'm suspicious of folks who claim to be bearers of a message from the Divine. If the Divine needs me to know something - I know it.........and so do you. Any other system has too much potential for deception. 

 

Religion is big business $$$. 


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#15 Alder Logs

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 05:10 PM

gallery_131808_1351_109063.jpg

 

 

These are all excellent questions; no one I've heard from has the answers.

 

 

Stick with the questions.   They have far more power than any answer.   What's concrete now may not be later.   Believing in nothing is not the same as not believing.   Experience is only true in presence.   Using our past experience as an example of experience is simply no more than a believing done in the present, making it a present experience of believing.     The memory of the experience is no more the experience than a thought about anything is what is being thought about.    We might even call some thought or memory a concrete example, using it to build a case for our imagined logical consistency.    We will not build any satisfactory case for the true present experiential reality through any hypothetical scenarios, no matter how well constructed they may be.    They are an abandonment of the present reality for a thought simulation, a veiling if you will.

 

The questions to hold are the ones that point us to the reality of the moment, not in thought, but in being.  They can provide an escape from mind's presentations of memory and projection when we at last recognize and tire of their unreality, leaving us only here and now with what is.   Holding the questions is not necessarily a thought problem, but something to be pondered, both in the movement of thought and in the stillness of silence.   We stay present with questions.   Finding the belief in an answer, we abandon the quest for knowing.    All that is truly known is in being.   What is "learned" in terms of thought is forever up for revision, or worse, is held as a fundamental belief.  What can hold such a belief?   Only a belief of self as it is limited to we as our persons.   It is a belief made up of beliefs, such as, I am the body and mind. 

 

Something in our greater awareness can see our believed in persona, as well as the beliefs which make it up, rational as they might seem.    So, I will put the question, who are we, as this greater seeing?  Is not this seeing here before, prior to, all and any beliefs which we have ever settled upon as an idea of who we are?   What of our believed in persona was on the scene before what we have learned to habitually think of ourselves as?    

 

A materialist viewpoint would have matter the precursor to consciousness.    The empirical research has started to tip the scales in the opposite direction, though the cruise ship of materialist science is not turning on any dimes.   I would not wait for it in any case, as it is not likely to turn the light onto what will of necessity escape its measurements. 


Edited by Alder Logs, 21 December 2017 - 05:15 PM.

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#16 Soliver

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 05:26 PM

I read that three times, and I'm still pretty sure you're agreeing with me 100%, which is refreshing after a long day (well, except for the part about "materialist" phenomenon, but that's you playing your delicious politics again).

 

I had a cruise ship of materialist science booked for the whole family, but the entire Disney crew was stricken with a stomach plague from sharing the furry costumes and it was cancelled.  We got a full refund.

 

If unanswered questions are power, then I'm the right hand of Allah.  Or maybe the left hand.  Whichever is dominant for Allah (or is he an amphibian?) ... more questions, see?

 

:)

 

soliver


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#17 Alder Logs

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 05:45 PM

What I am always going on about is how we identify.  Since we are not a thing, as being, all the things we perceive can be thrown out as to what we are, if we are primarily being.  So, we have the possibility of ending our entrenched habit of trying to be something.   The persona loves to add and subtract all sorts of qualities and values to its made up idea of self.   That is more exhausting than the case of our poor nihilist.    Just being, is freeing.   The habits of identification will go on until they wind down from our lack of attention and interest. Meanwhile, we still get to be the seeing/perception, and the present knowing it constantly gives us, at least until we disappear as any bullshit ideas that get outed.    What disappears is nothing, but it was believed for a time to be something.    To fully enter being, we won't enter it as any something we could present as other.    In that, we see the unreality of any idea of other.    We still have the body/mind, but see it isn't what we are.   What has it, is us in our true formless form. 


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#18 Marleyahu

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Posted 21 December 2017 - 06:12 PM

 

gallery_131808_1351_109063.jpg

 

 

These are all excellent questions; no one I've heard from has the answers.

 

 

Stick with the questions.   They have far more power than any answer.   What's concrete now may not be later.   Believing in nothing is not the same as not believing.   Experience is only true in presence.   Using our past experience as an example of experience is simply no more than a believing done in the present, making it a present experience of believing.     The memory of the experience is no more the experience than a thought about anything is what is being thought about.    We might even call some thought or memory a concrete example, using it to build a case for our imagined logical consistency.    We will not build any satisfactory case for the true present experiential reality through any hypothetical scenarios, no matter how well constructed they may be.    They are an abandonment of the present reality for a thought simulation, a veiling if you will.

 

The questions to hold are the ones that point us to the reality of the moment, not in thought, but in being.  They can provide an escape from mind's presentations of memory and projection when we at last recognize and tire of their unreality, leaving us only here and now with what is.   Holding the questions is not necessarily a thought problem, but something to be pondered, both in the movement of thought and in the stillness of silence.   We stay present with questions.   Finding the belief in an answer, we abandon the quest for knowing.    All that is truly known is in being.   What is "learned" in terms of thought is forever up for revision, or worse, is held as a fundamental belief.  What can hold such a belief?   Only a belief of self as it is limited to we as our persons.   It is a belief made up of beliefs, such as, I am the body and mind. 

 

Something in our greater awareness can see our believed in persona, as well as the beliefs which make it up, rational as they might seem.    So, I will put the question, who are we, as this greater seeing?  Is not this seeing here before, prior to, all and any beliefs which we have ever settled upon as an idea of who we are?   What of our believed in persona was on the scene before what we have learned to habitually think of ourselves as?    

 

A materialist viewpoint would have matter the precursor to consciousness.    The empirical research has started to tip the scales in the opposite direction, though the cruise ship of materialist science is not turning on any dimes.   I would not wait for it in any case, as it is not likely to turn the light onto what will of necessity escape its measurements. 

 

 

I could not have put this into any better words. I'm so thrilled reading through this thread. I'm really happy I made it!


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#19 firerat

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 10:22 AM

After reading Soliver's posts over the last week or so, I may be in fact becoming a Solivarianist.

 

I don't know what the hell I believe in terms of religion and spirituality and I don't really care much. Never really have.


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#20 Marleyahu

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Posted 22 December 2017 - 10:36 AM

After reading Soliver's posts over the last week or so, I may be in fact becoming a Solivarianist.

 

I don't know what the hell I believe in terms of religion and spirituality and I don't really care much. Never really have.

 

It seems you would be a nihilist of sorts. I kind of wish I was the same way. I catch myself wondering about spiritualism all the time but sometimes it only makes my confusion worse. Is there nothing that you question about the creation and existence of this life though? No questions or thoughts on the afterlife or what is to become of all this?






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