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It's too bad so many people read the Bible in such narrow ways - because they fail to see the underlying message. What you wrote, Amanda, takes this thinking to the level of humanity - the level of creation. I love it. :)

 

Awww shucks, Open Minded, thanks! You say things much more eloquently than I! Your posts are always appreciated by me. :thanks:

 

It's not that people read the Bible too narrow minded, IMO, as it is the pervasive spin and hijacking of these teachings that seem to have been altered for personal gains, then endoctorinated into society. :ugh: What is amazing, is that people who were raised and/or brought into the thick of these crazy ideologies were able to escape them by NOT being narrow minded, and found the core essence of a more real truth on their own... like those here at ExC!

 

Although I still give merit to these teachings, I am thankful for the more critical perspective brought to me here, and was amazed at how much I had even been effected by fundamentalism. I think the wonderful diversity and openness amongst those here has really helped everyone on here! I assure you that this site is certainly more open and dedicated to truth than any "church" I've attended. I've read where you attend an unusually great church, and I did have a teacher in seminary the same way, but it is rare. This place seems to offer the most unity than any place! :10:

 

I keep seeing the ExCs as the closest thing to true Christians, yet... don't tell anyone... :Look:

 

christians are some of the most un-christlike people i have ever met.

 

"i like your christ, i dont like your christians." -ghandi

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Hi Amanda

"I think if we look at ourselves as different perspectives, different expressions of the same entity, then we maintain our individual uniqueness and also appreciate our interrelated unity."

- This is what I am ultimately driving at. I would argue that we do not obtain a transcendental view (this is what you seem to be implying) from which we look at ourselves. Rather, in emotional-evaluative terms, we see ourselves as enacting different forms of life (what you call perspectives) from within a perspective from which we ground our temporally immediate perspective. When we switch forms of life, we ground our emotional-evaluative judgment in that form of life. Our awareness of the different forms of life is grounded in our own 'feeling' and 'sense' of our own history of moving through forms of life (which are often juxtaposed - e.g. I can be a Christian and an Academic and both forms of life are critical of each other and in agreement with each other on various issues). Some people deny this transitory multiplicity of self and, hence, achieve no oneness. It is acceptance of ambivalence that we can obtain a sense of oneness (something impossible for fundamental and dogmatic naturalists who struggle to attain a single form of life). This oneness is not a transcendental view upon ourselves but a self-consciousness that can become manifest in the whole of a lived life in and through the various forms of life that constitute our existence.

 

"How can a sense of outsideness hold something else worthy of reverence any more than appreciating that we and he/she/it are one? We seem to naturally appreciate something that is part of us more valuable than that which is not... hence patriotism, etc.. Ambivalence, as in complacency, comes from a sense of feeling... "it's not my problem." Having a sense of unity with all things, complacency and ambivalence would seem to be weakened."

- I am using the term outsideness in a self-reflective sense and not as in a sense denoting categorizing the other. I gain outsideness from my own taken-for-granted way of living and from there look back upon myself. Outsideness means to recognize the other as a fully fledged person in their own right and, as such, know what it means to live their life and what compels them to be (this comes from Buber and the I-Thou).

- I am using ambivalence in a more psychoanalytic sense to denote the sense of schism that can drive dogmatism in an effort to reduce the dissonance but can be the source of aesthetic creation if accepted as a state of life. That is, when I act as a Christian, I can be aware of my form of life entailed in being an academic such that I experience an ambivalent tension between these two forms of life. That is, I can allow myself to be conscious of the multiplicity of my experience. This self-consciousness/ambivalence means that I cannot enact the Christian form of life in a taken for granted manner and can stylize its enactment as a live life such that I bring to bear the self-reflection derived from the academic form of life (that is born in my interactions with other academics). That is pretty dense. I am sorry if it is too opaque.

 

Thanks for the warm welcome.

Best,

Jimmy

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Hi Amanda

"I think if we look at ourselves as different perspectives, different expressions of the same entity, then we maintain our individual uniqueness and also appreciate our interrelated unity."

- This is what I am ultimately driving at. I would argue that we do not obtain a transcendental view (this is what you seem to be implying) from which we look at ourselves. Rather, in emotional-evaluative terms, we see ourselves as enacting different forms of life (what you call perspectives) from within a perspective from which we ground our temporally immediate perspective.

 

:)Jimmy, okay, I'm with you so far...

 

When we switch forms of life, we ground our emotional-evaluative judgment in that form of life. Our awareness of the different forms of life is grounded in our own 'feeling' and 'sense' of our own history of moving through forms of life (which are often juxtaposed - e.g. I can be a Christian and an Academic and both forms of life are critical of each other and in agreement with each other on various issues).

Okay, you're talking about switching roles within our self, not amongst ourselves. I was referring moreso to the ability to switch roles amongst each other, a technique called empathy... compassion, which is considered the keys to heaven and hell in biblical teachings. I also believe in reconciliation within us is important, as it lends to the ability to have compassion for others. If we don't feel our own feelings, being numb/heart of stone, how can we have compassion for another?

 

Some people deny this transitory multiplicity of self and, hence, achieve no oneness. It is acceptance of ambivalence that we can obtain a sense of oneness (something impossible for fundamental and dogmatic naturalists who struggle to attain a single form of life). This oneness is not a transcendental view upon ourselves but a self-consciousness that can become manifest in the whole of a lived life in and through the various forms of life that constitute our existence.

 

Okay... are we saying the same thing? Sure reconciliation has to start within our self, to be achieving a place we are whole. This is not just integrating roles within ourself, it is also to include the healing of fractured wounds to our emotional self that causes fragmentation in our psyche. I can still realize myself unique in this world, and still hold that there is a transcendental concept too. It is in my own personal uniqueness that I get to experience my own spiritual journey, and the overcoming these fragmenting occurrences enhance my strength and substance of this journey. Achieving the level of actualization, I recognize my uniqueness and my desire to be a contribution to the tanscendental perspective of me being at one and part of the whole.

 

"How can a sense of outsideness hold something else worthy of reverence any more than appreciating that we and he/she/it are one? We seem to naturally appreciate something that is part of us more valuable than that which is not... hence patriotism, etc.. Ambivalence, as in complacency, comes from a sense of feeling... "it's not my problem." Having a sense of unity with all things, complacency and ambivalence would seem to be weakened."

- I am using the term outsideness in a self-reflective sense and not as in a sense denoting categorizing the other. I gain outsideness from my own taken-for-granted way of living and from there look back upon myself. Outsideness means to recognize the other as a fully fledged person in their own right and, as such, know what it means to live their life and what compels them to be (this comes from Buber and the I-Thou).

Sure there are benefits to recognizing each other as separate and deserving of respect to limits and boundaries that accompany these regards. However, do we remain here all the time? If I maintain that I am duly separated completely and totally from all else, this could lend itself to degradation of others and a tendency to elitist mentality... doesn't it?

 

- I am using ambivalence in a more psychoanalytic sense to denote the sense of schism that can drive dogmatism in an effort to reduce the dissonance but can be the source of aesthetic creation if accepted as a state of life. That is, when I act as a Christian, I can be aware of my form of life entailed in being an academic such that I experience an ambivalent tension between these two forms of life.

:) Jimmy, wait a minute! Whoaaaaa there! My friend, dogmatism can not reduce dissonance, unless you think complacency and ambivalence is real peace! I assert very strongly it is not! Dogma had initial contributions to Christianity, however, it has been totally exploited, as much of these teachings have been. To reduce dissonance by blindly obliging to someone else's reasoning and interpretation of these teachings goes directly contradictory to these initial teachings IMO. It seems to me that the concept of being a "Christian" and being an "academic" should not be conflicting, nor contradictory. That would defeat the reconciling process and the ability to becoming Whole. As I understand this dynamic, being ambivalent or complacent about this conflict in one's life is to allow a dysfunction to exist. How can Truth contradict Truth? :shrug:

 

That is, I can allow myself to be conscious of the multiplicity of my experience. This self-consciousness/ambivalence means that I cannot enact the Christian form of life in a taken for granted manner and can stylize its enactment as a live life such that I bring to bear the self-reflection derived from the academic form of life (that is born in my interactions with other academics).

Jimmy, Jimmy, Jimmy... my friend... I am a mother, an employee, a student, a date, a gardener, a housekeeper, etc., however, although each role has its own thrust, in that I act differently as a date than I do as a mother, they are still interrelated and do not conflict with each other. If I feel that being a mother is conflicting with being a date or that being a date is conflicting with being a mother... I am NOT going to be ambivalent about those feelings! I must reconcile those feelings with each other that I can truthfully come to a resolution that I can find real peace, NOT false peace. :ohmy:

 

It is important to maintain the role I have for the particular function I want to accomplish, however, allowing the harmonious flow of information from all roles helps each role even more! Being ambivalent or complacent about any aspect would cause a schism to form... and halt beneficial flow of other infomation too.

 

Of course, this is all just in IMHO. :thanks:

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“Okay, you're talking about switching roles within our self, not amongst ourselves. I was referring moreso to the ability to switch roles amongst each other, a technique called empathy...”

- well somewhat. I do not think that it is so easy to separate the roles within from roles without. I think that the roles that we have within ourselves come through interaction with others such that I can be many selves as per the many different domains of activity that I participate in. That is, I have a father self that is grounded in my interactions with other fathers. I have an academic self that is grounded in my actions with other academics. And so on. Each of these socially constituted selves involves its own embodied, lexicon, and ideological style that come together in a socially grounded consciousness. What happens in the world of life as it is lived becomes the stuff that constitutes our own life. I am saying that our mind is ultimately in the world with others and not locked up as a self-contained entity. So switching selves is as much as a something that happens within as something that happens without – actually, I do not hold to the subjective-objective distinction that this implies.

 

Dear Amanda,

Thank you for your respons.

“I can still realize myself unique in this world, ...being at one and part of the whole.”

-my question then is: In what is this transcendental aspect grounded? Is it grounded in the self-contained individual or is it grounded in the world of others (this would no longer be transcendental)? Do we have it a priori or do we develop it? Does the transcendental perspective lie outside of ourselves looking down upon life and, if so, from where does this perspective ground itself? My point is that we do not have to consider one to have achieve a grant-overarching-I in order to see beyond oneself. I can come into a unity with others and the world by virtue of knowing the other and accepting ambivalent tensions.

 

“However, do we remain here all the time? If I maintain that I am duly separated completely and totally from all else, this could lend itself to degradation of others and a tendency to elitist mentality... doesn't it?”

- I think that I am trying to say that we never separate from the social world in which we live our lives. We come to know the other in her own right in simultanaeity with our own apprehension of ourselves.

“Jimmy, wait a minute! Whoaaaaa there! My friend, dogmatism can not reduce dissonance, unless you think complacency and ambivalence is real peace!”

- Complacency and ambivalence are not synonyms. The latter involves a productive tension.

 

“To reduce dissonance by blindly obliging to someone else's reasoning and interpretation of these teachings goes directly contradictory to these initial teachings IMO.

- I apologize, my initial statement was far too glib and unclear. When one is committed to one world view against all possibility of openness (such as a fundamentalist or a strict empiricist, or whatever) there is a tendency to reduce cognitive dissonance by restructuring the world of experience to conform to this world view. Although there may be some deep seated psychoanalytic conflict, it is repressed and, of course, sublimated in some what (perhaps hatred of homosexuals etc.) This is not ambivalence and, I think, has not aesthetic value.

- When I am referring to ambivalence, I am referring to the consciousness of differentiation “within” oneself and a newfound capacity for self-reflection. This sort of ambivalence can be thereby harnessed in the aesthetic development of one’s own life.

 

It seems to me that the concept of being a "Christian" and being an "academic" should not be conflicting, nor contradictory. That would defeat the reconciling process and the ability to becoming Whole. As I understand this dynamic, being ambivalent or complacent about this conflict in one's life is to allow a dysfunction to exist.”

- Well first off, I am proposing more of an indissoluable dialectic. Conflict is not allowed to simply exists without reflection because something is done through the capacity for self-reflection that is gained by juxtaposition. This is where the role of aesthetic creation becomes central. The fundamentalist may actually apprehend the other but will repress the meaning of the other in order to live out the fundamentalist form of life without conflict and thereby submits herself completely to others – here self is definitely lost. Or the fundamentalist can stylize and change her fundamental expression such that it is no longer a pure expression of fundamentalism but a stylization of it – when the other is taken into account, the fundamentalism becomes a unique creation that is emergent from the consciousness of both the other and one’s own participation in fundamentalism.

“How can Truth contradict Truth?”

- Well, this happens all of the time. Take a look at second generation immigrants who live in two different worlds of truths: there is the taken-for-granted reality of their parents culture of origin and the taken-for-granted reality of the ‘Western’ culture. I do not think that truth is held in propositions about things because truth is lived and only afterward articulated. This is really a much larger argument so I will stop here.

“I am NOT going to be ambivalent about those feelings! I must reconcile those feelings with each other that I can truthfully come to a resolution that I can find real peace, NOT false peace”

- Amanda, I hope that the discussion of aesthetics above and the notion of ambivalence should help you understand what I would say in response to this.

 

I should appologize because I find that I tend to skimp out in my answers b/c of the fact that I don't want to write an essay every time I log on. Please accept my appologies.

This discussion with you am OM has been by far the best that I have had on this site.

 

Best,

Jimmy

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Dear OM,

Let me first apologize for not responding sooner. I am very busy right now and I simply ran out of time the last time I logged on.

:Doh:

Thank you for your warm welcome! I am very appreciative of your description of your own personal journey.

 

"Jimmy - what I'm getting out of your response is that you feel there's a possibility that our "uniqueness" could get lost in an experience of oneness?"

- no, my statement is more reflective of oneness. Our uniqueness is lost if we give into a form of life wholly and loose any capacity for outsideness. That is, I think that if we pursue oneness towards a synthesis of everything into one homogeneous mass, then we can run the risk of living in a world with no 'other' as I outlined above in discussion with Amanda.

 

"Please keep in mind when I speak of a loss of SELF (I'm speaking of a loss of a FALSE sense of self). It drops away - and one feels quite free actually. Very free - so free that it becomes extremely difficult to remain "grounded" - to keep a sense that the little things of life must be done."

- Well, I do not know what you mean by "false" sense of self. What is this and in what is the veridicality of self grounded?

Without loosing a sense of one's uniqueness -... Do you see where I'm going here?

- I know what you are talking about and I am hoping to bring the conversation to a little more of a reflective mode. For example, I am getting at the sort of consciousness that is entailed in 'oneness" etc. Can you propositionally map out a consistency through proposition or is it sensed and inconsistency remains but is irrelevant?

"Honestly - there is nothing to fear."

- this is a bit of a strange comment and I think it is grounded in what you perceive to be my perspective as a Christian. I am not really afraid but I am curious about this experience and the sort of synthesis (if there is one at all) you are proposing.

 

"It's all still there - they are just more "open" about living. They are more "open" to people different from themselves. They are more "open" about the problems of the world and the problems of humanity. "

- do you think that this is different from what I am saying?

 

 

"It's too bad so many people read the Bible in such narrow ways - because they fail to see the underlying message. What you wrote, Amanda, takes this thinking to the level of humanity - the level of creation. I love it. :) "

- I couldn't agree more except that I would carry the claim a little further and argue that the message is not underlying and waiting to be uncovered. The message comes into relation with our lives and takes on a unique meaning.

 

Anyway,

Thanks for letting me ramble.

Best,

Jimmy

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:wave:Hi again Jimmy! Gosh, I'm trying to understand what you are saying. I hope I'm getting close. First... are you opposed to the concept of 'oneness' at some level?

 

That is, I have a father self that is grounded in my interactions with other fathers.

Well, there are accepted standards set by our social norms. Modeling, even subconsciously, has a big impact on our psyche. I would hope that we would also have some of our own sacred values that would ground us, no matter what the social arena was doing.

I have an academic self that is grounded in my actions with other academics. And so on.
Yes, there seems to be an acceptable norm established in similar groups. Yet, one's own values would be the grounding source. Being a father and an associate/collegue are just two faces to your one self though.
Each of these socially constituted selves involves its own embodied, lexicon, and ideological style that come together in a socially grounded consciousness. What happens in the world of life as it is lived becomes the stuff that constitutes our own life. I am saying that our mind is ultimately in the world with others and not locked up as a self-contained entity. So switching selves is as much as a something that happens within as something that happens without – actually, I do not hold to the subjective-objective distinction that this implies.

Actually, I don't see any real disagreement so far. :shrug:

 

-my question then is: In what is this transcendental aspect grounded? Is it grounded in the self-contained individual or is it grounded in the world of others (this would no longer be transcendental)? Do we have it a priori or do we develop it? Does the transcendental perspective lie outside of ourselves looking down upon life and, if so, from where does this perspective ground itself? My point is that we do not have to consider one to have achieve a grant-overarching-I in order to see beyond oneself. I can come into a unity with others and the world by virtue of knowing the other and accepting ambivalent tensions.

It is my understanding that everything is grounded in consciousness. However, it seems to be an illusion that we are separate. We are a function of quantum waves and the possibility that is established is due to 'The Consciousness' manifested through the embodiment as each as individuals, experiencing all things through all things. More of this found here. Here is one excerpt from this interview of this well respected scientist, Amit Goswami:

We are nothing but the brain, which is made up of atoms and elementary particles. So how can a brain which is made up of atoms and elementary particles convert a possibility wave that it itself is? It itself is made up of the possibility waves of atoms and elementary particles, so it cannot convert its own possibility wave into actuality. This is called a paradox. Now in the new view, consciousness is the ground of being. So who converts possibility into actuality? Consciousness does, because consciousness does not obey quantum physics. Consciousness is not made of material. Consciousness is transcendent. Do you see the paradigm-changing view right here—how consciousness can be said to create the material world?The material world of quantum physics is just possibility. It is consciousness, through the conversion of possibility into actuality, that creates what we see manifest. In other words, consciousness creates the manifest world.

 

I think that I am trying to say that we never separate from the social world in which we live our lives. We come to know the other in her own right in simultanaeity with our own apprehension of ourselves.

Please explain this. I agree that we are not separate from the social world... I don't think we are totally separate from anything! We come to know a certain amount of another person, and I don't really see what you mean by the apprehension of ourself. I know that often what we don't like in someone else, we may also have this same characteristic. Is that what you mean? If so, how does this apply to being ultimately totally separate?

 

When one is committed to one world view against all possibility of openness (such as a fundamentalist or a strict empiricist, or whatever) there is a tendency to reduce cognitive dissonance by restructuring the world of experience to conform to this world view. Although there may be some deep seated psychoanalytic conflict, it is repressed and, of course, sublimated in some what (perhaps hatred of homosexuals etc.) This is not ambivalence and, I think, has not aesthetic value.

Jimmy, I would think that the uniqueness of each person would not lend itself to one world view, and I don't think that one world view is part of the oneness. That is what I thought too... except Open Minded and NBBTB offered a possible position in which we could all think differently, yet still be respectful and open to others, as long as others respected all too. Some people would have their own special thrust in life, making differential thinking all that more valued. Still, each contributing to the whole in the way they desire to do so. We're not talking about a Hitler revolution... see what I mean?

 

- Well first off, I am proposing more of an indissoluable dialectic. Conflict is not allowed to simply exists without reflection because something is done through the capacity for self-reflection that is gained by juxtaposition.

Yes, and to have a logical conclusion that can not be changed, is to come up with ultimate truth, right? So conflict resolved with a position that can't be anulled, would have to stand in harmony of all the parts, wouldn't it?

This is where the role of aesthetic creation becomes central. The fundamentalist may actually apprehend the other but will repress the meaning of the other in order to live out the fundamentalist form of life without conflict and thereby submits herself completely to others – here self is definitely lost.
Hmmm... the Cleopatra syndrome... queen of denial? :HaHa:

 

Or the fundamentalist can stylize and change her fundamental expression such that it is no longer a pure expression of fundamentalism but a stylization of it – when the other is taken into account, the fundamentalism becomes a unique creation that is emergent from the consciousness of both the other and one’s own participation in fundamentalism.
Hopefully this is adapting to and being open to information and strong enough to assess its validity. This may be a healthy transitional process, right? Still, what does this have to do with an underlying oneness? :shrug:

 

:grin: Hey, Jimmy... I think you would enjoy some debates in the science and religous forums as well. Thanks for the compliments on our debate, as I've enjoyed this discussion with you too. Once you've posted a few times, myself and others will learn to understand what is the position, from which you are expressing yourself. Right now, I'm just trying to basically understand your vantage point. My apologies if I am not allowing really easy discourse to emerge. The more I understand fundamentally where you are, the better I get at understanding. :phew:

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Hi Again,

 

I am opposed to oneness of a certain kind: a grand-I that synthesizes everything into a nice tight unity.

 

"Yet, one's own values would be the grounding source. Being a father and an associate/colleague are just two faces to your one self though."

- Well - are there two faces of one self or two selves? I challenge you to defend the position that the self is one - i.e. there is a grand singularity of consciousness that looks down upon all of the different consciousness and orders them (the Homunculus). I think that you are in grave danger if you hold to the claim that values are one's own. Values, and any other moral notion, cannot exists without a community. That is, values are expressions of justice etc. that pertain to others and are ultimately grounded in social experience. Like most of we normally take to be self-contained, values belong to the realm of the social. Give me a value that makes any sense to a person in isolation. All expressions of value or descriptors of the self make only have meaning in a social realm. You may find it fruitful to explore the nature of language and how language constructs reality instead of representing it (this issue is at the heart of Soule's and Asminov's debate earlier)

 

"It is my understanding that everything is grounded in consciousness. However, it seems to be an illusion that we are separate. We are a function of quantum waves and the possibility that is established is due to 'The Consciousness' manifested through the embodiment as each as individuals, experiencing all things through all things. "

- What kind of consciousness? Would say a Kantian notion of practical consciousness as opposed to the Cartesian notion of a propositional cogito? I think that you are mixing these two understandings of consciousness up. Don't you think that different forms of life entail different consciousnesses? It sounds like you are invoking a 'new-agey' kind of global consciousness/karma type thing. Is that what you are referring to?

 

From Amit Goswami: "Do you see the paradigm-changing view right here—how consciousness can be said to create the material world? The material world of quantum physics is just possibility. It is consciousness, through the conversion of possibility into actuality, that creates what we see manifest. In other words, consciousness creates the manifest world. "

- While this seems to be an interesting man, I think that he makes an error by linking materiality with reality a priori. There are many immaterial things that are certainly real - values being one of them. IMO, he is implicitly pointing towards the way in which the brain cannot be the source of mind in itself. However, I am arguing that one does not need to jump immediately to transcendence if you take consciousness to be grounded in the world of life lived with others.

 

"Please explain this. I agree that we are not separate from the social world... I don't think we are totally separate from anything! We come to know a certain amount of another person, and I don't really see what you mean by the apprehension of our self. I know that often what we don't like in someone else, we may also have this same characteristic. Is that what you mean? If so, how does this apply to being ultimately totally separate?"

- Well, I don't think that the I can apprehend myself without an-other. I have a natural way of living that I take for granted and this natural way of living comes from the forms of life into which I have been socialized (for example: your persistent belief in a self-contained individualism as per phrases such as "own values" or "false self" which, I think, puts you in a strange paradox where you are arguing for a oneness at the same time as talking about isolated individualities). Because this way of living is natural to me, I simply live it as if it is truth and cannot reflect back upon it unless I come to know someone who is different. They see my natural way of being as odd and I can see it as odd as well when I come to see myself through their 'eyes.' It is at that moment that I can reflect back upon myself. For example, I may have a natural way of being that comes from my participation in Christianity and when I come to this site and interact with people here I can come to see what I would have taken for granted.

"... We're not talking about a Hitler revolution... see what I mean?"

- I am dreadfully sorry but you lost me. Are you reading what I write within the framework assumption that I am an evangelical Christian defending some sort of Christian orthodoxy? I am not falling in line with evangelical Christianity at all in this instance.

 

"Yes, and to have a logical conclusion that can not be changed, is to come up with ultimate truth, right?"

- Only if you put "ultimate truth" in quotation marks because this truth is taken to be ultimate. I don't think that we obtain an ultimate truth in the sense that deep south Baptists use.

 

So conflict resolved with a position that can't be anulled, would have to stand in harmony of all the parts, wouldn't it?

- I think that I would agree with this as long as you are using 'resolution' in terms of aesthetics that I set out earlier.

 

"Hopefully this is adapting to and being open to information and strong enough to assess its validity. This may be a healthy transitional process, right?"

- Only if you see that the fundamentalist must move to a new true position. Again, I am not sure where you ground 'validity.'

 

"Still, what does this have to do with an underlying oneness?"

- It comes from my poorly phrased first response where I set out the claim that oneness is not a grand-I that looks down but a self-consciousness and acceptance of the ambivalence inherent in living life.

 

"I think you would enjoy some debates in the science and religious forums as well. "

- I have been pretty disappointed - they seem to take for granted a bunch of empiricist notions that aren't so tenable. Soule is the first person to really demonstrate an awareness of some of these issues. :thanks: Much of the debate that I have seen has not been so enlightening. I was actually thinking, until I came across this post, of not bothering any more with this site.

 

"My apologies if I am not allowing really easy discourse to emerge. The more I understand fundamentally where you are, the better I get at understanding."

- I should probably be the one to apologize. I am just to damn esoteric.

 

Best,

Jimmy

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Hello Jimmy:

 

I do understand the shortage of time – for I feel it as well. I’d love to post more often and longer. But, alas my time is short these days.

 

Jimmy - what I'm getting out of your response is that you feel there's a possibility that our "uniqueness" could get lost in an experience of oneness?"
- no, my statement is more reflective of oneness. Our uniqueness is lost if we give into a form of life wholly and loose any capacity for outsideness. That is, I think that if we pursue oneness towards a synthesis of everything into one homogeneous mass, then we can run the risk of living in a world with no 'other' as I outlined above in discussion with Amanda.
Yes, I’ve been following your discussion with Amanda, and am still not quite sure what to make of it. For instance – I wonder about the following statement...

 

That is, when I act as a Christian, I can be aware of my form of life entailed in being an academic such that I experience an ambivalent tension between these two forms of life. That is, I can allow myself to be conscious of the multiplicity of my experience. This self-consciousness/ambivalence means that I cannot enact the Christian form of life in a taken for granted manner and can stylize its enactment as a live life such that I bring to bear the self-reflection derived from the academic form of life (that is born in my interactions with other academics). That is pretty dense. I am sorry if it is too opaque.

Jimmy – in concrete terms please – where exactly do you feel “tension” between being an academic and being a Christian? I’m really curious about that statement - and it would really help if you would give concrete examples.

 

 

Please keep in mind when I speak of a loss of SELF (I'm speaking of a loss of a FALSE sense of self). It drops away - and one feels quite free actually. Very free - so free that it becomes extremely difficult to remain "grounded" - to keep a sense that the little things of life must be done.
- Well, I do not know what you mean by "false" sense of self. What is this and in what is the veridicality of self grounded?
In short the false self could be considered the ego. Both eastern and western meditative traditions recognize the existence of the false self. Within the Christian meditative tradition – the true self is our spiritual self, but it is hidden from us by our false self. Following is a link that gives more information about the false self/true self from a Christian contemplative perspective. http://www.coutreach.org/fruits/fruits02.htm

 

 

Without loosing a sense of one's uniqueness -... Do you see where I'm going here?
- I know what you are talking about and I am hoping to bring the conversation to a little more of a reflective mode. For example, I am getting at the sort of consciousness that is entailed in 'oneness" etc. Can you propositionally map out a consistency through proposition or is it sensed and inconsistency remains but is irrelevant?
I’m not sure what you mean by this question, Jimmy. Could you clarify?

 

 

"It's all still there - they are just more "open" about living. They are more "open" to people different from themselves. They are more "open" about the problems of the world and the problems of humanity. "
- do you think that this is different from what I am saying?

I’m not sure, because I’m not sure what you are trying to say in this discussion. Not to sound like a professor – or anything – but could you state your premise in one or two short sentences. I’m not sure I am understanding you correctly. :scratch:

 

I look forward to your response.

 

Thanks for your patience with my inability to grasp the point you are trying to make.

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- I am using the term outsideness in a self-reflective sense and not as in a sense denoting categorizing the other. I gain outsideness from my own taken-for-granted way of living and from there look back upon myself. Outsideness means to recognize the other as a fully fledged person in their own right and, as such, know what it means to live their life and what compels them to be (this comes from Buber and the I-Thou).

- I am using ambivalence in a more psychoanalytic sense to denote the sense of schism that can drive dogmatism in an effort to reduce the dissonance but can be the source of aesthetic creation if accepted as a state of life. That is, when I act as a Christian, I can be aware of my form of life entailed in being an academic such that I experience an ambivalent tension between these two forms of life. That is, I can allow myself to be conscious of the multiplicity of my experience. This self-consciousness/ambivalence means that I cannot enact the Christian form of life in a taken for granted manner and can stylize its enactment as a live life such that I bring to bear the self-reflection derived from the academic form of life (that is born in my interactions with other academics). That is pretty dense. I am sorry if it is too opaque.

 

Thanks for the warm welcome.

Best,

Jimmy

I am just going to test the waters here a little because I am having a hard time following you.

 

It seems you are saying that the roles we play in life are important and I agree. They should be respected as a work of art...a play on the stage of life. Yes, this is aesthetics. Yet, as beautiful as each of our roles are, they are not who we are. This is the human part of human being. The being part is the essence that is in all of us and everything. It's okay to recognize and respect ourself and other's stories for the art that it is, but it is more important to know that it is just that. We shouldn't allow ourselves to become the story. If my role as a mother becomes my identity, when will it cease? I will continue to act as a mother when my child is 40 if I don't recognize her beingness and mine are the same. It is only then that we can truly know each other outside the roles we play.

 

If you allow yourself to be conscious of your multiplicity of your experiences, you are not becoming those experiences. You are aware of this and being aware of your roles stops you from becoming fundamental or dogmatic. You are the awareness...as we all are. Some may never become aware of this distinction and continue to live the role they have chosen or that has been chosen for them.

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Wow Jimmy... you're stretching my thinking. :thanks:

 

I am opposed to oneness of a certain kind: a grand-I that synthesizes everything into a nice tight unity.

What do you think of the comprehensive ecosystem?

 

- Well - are there two faces of one self or two selves? I challenge you to defend the position that the self is one - i.e. there is a grand singularity of consciousness that looks down upon all of the different consciousness and orders them (the Homunculus).

How can we not be one if there is the fluidity of information amongst all our roles? NOT that we order them out of us, but that they spontaneously emerge subconsciously to preform what we ultimately deem necessary for survival at that moment. The homunculus may be the 'lie' we have come to believe, that we are just one man embodied in the germcell that deems us separate, or it may be a portion of the overall consciousness apropriated for that purpose of sensing ourself separate, and engaging in all those other experiences you so eloquently present, only to be produced by amnesic barriers between us externally (hopefully not internally).

 

 

I think that you are in grave danger if you hold to the claim that values are one's own.

Jimmy, I think you are proving my point... and I am getting confused here. Of course society contributes to our values! That is part of what makes us ALL interconnected at some point. However, there are unique renderings from each life experience, yielding different values. Ex. Fundamentalism vs Atheism, as each can be in the same society. Also, there are those that donate to xyz and the neighbor prehaps wouldn't dream of doing so!

 

You may find it fruitful to explore the nature of language and how language constructs reality instead of representing it (this issue is at the heart of Soule's and Asminov's debate earlier)

I think it can be approached from both ways, instead of either/or, don't you?

 

 

- What kind of consciousness? Would say a Kantian notion of practical consciousness as opposed to the Cartesian notion of a propositional cogito? I think that you are mixing these two understandings of consciousness up. Don't you think that different forms of life entail different consciousnesses? It sounds like you are invoking a 'new-agey' kind of global consciousness/karma type thing. Is that what you are referring to?

What would you call a progressive emerging awareness out of us, an awakening? As Carl Sagan said something like, we are part of the cosmos trying to know itself. I like what NBBTB said in her above post too.

 

- While this seems to be an interesting man, I think that he makes an error by linking materiality with reality a priori.

I thought he was saying an overall consciousness was responsible for both of these. Consciousness being expressed in different forms, via translating the possibility waves, eventually gives rise to consciousness in our experience in recognizing 'opposing/different forces'... hence the rise of values deemed advantageous in the journey of this experience as such. Is this all an illusion as Einstien suggests, albeit a very persistent one?

 

There are many immaterial things that are certainly real - values being one of them. IMO, he is implicitly pointing towards the way in which the brain cannot be the source of mind in itself. However, I am arguing that one does not need to jump immediately to transcendence if you take consciousness to be grounded in the world of life lived with others.

Why can't there be both?

 

- Well, I don't think that the I can apprehend myself without an-other.

Okay, I think I see what you're saying. We can't perceive what does not present itself to an opposing/different force, and it is in others that we are able to reflect back to us an awareness of many things about ourself. Hence, that all seems to lead back to the concept of total interrelatedness amongst all things and an overall unity of all organisms ultimately being the organs of the ONE organism. We need each other, all things, to validate our own self, don't we? Again, evident by the progressive realization of the precious value of the entire ecosystem.

 

"... We're not talking about a Hitler revolution... see what I mean?"

- I am dreadfully sorry but you lost me.

Apologies. What I am saying is that we don't take one value without personal introspection and discussion of its appropriateness, without critical thinking and learning from the past. Uniqueness, free and critical thinking from different perspectives is always of value to the Whole, IMHO.

 

"Still, what does this have to do with an underlying oneness?"

- It comes from my poorly phrased first response where I set out the claim that oneness is not a grand-I that looks down but a self-consciousness and acceptance of the ambivalence inherent in living life.

There's something here that is trying to speak to me, and I'm trying to figure it out. Once I do, I have a feeling it will be an ephiphany. :scratch:

 

:thanks:

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"Still, what does this have to do with an underlying oneness?"

- It comes from my poorly phrased first response where I set out the claim that oneness is not a grand-I that looks down but a self-consciousness and acceptance of the ambivalence inherent in living life.

There's something here that is trying to speak to me, and I'm trying to figure it out. Once I do, I have a feeling it will be an ephiphany. :scratch:

 

Jimmy, I think this consciousness is expressing itself through all things. Then it seems to me that 'ambivalence' is just a result of these amnesic barriers between what is perceived as separate than us, isn't it? However, I do agree with you in that self-consciousness is the jewel that makes life so wonderful! :wink:

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