Jump to content

Church Of The Inner Light. Would That Work?


Guest biofriendly
 Share

Recommended Posts

Guest biofriendly

Church of The Inner Light

 

 

Children have imagined friends but skip them when they grow old.

Grown ups have literal gods but skip them when they realized there is no evidence for them.

 

Would it be too embarrassing to have an imagined god as ones imagined friend after leaving faith in the literal supernatural god?

 

Could an imagined god still work?

 

Feels kind of weird to even ask but there is something about imagined gods that I find contagious.

 

By pure randomness I came upon something that sounds a bit like an imagined god.

At least a symbolic interpretation of Ultimate Reality as a god sort of. Amida Buddha.

 

A- is same a- as in a-theism which could mean without as in without faith in gods.

mida is Japanese for the Indian word for mita or measure. So amida means without limit or boundless measure.

 

Understood as the Ultimate Reality is infinite and without measure and infinite wise and infinite compassionate.

 

This is my atheistic understanding of it so those who practice Amida Buddhism most likely have a traditional take on it.

 

anyway here is citation from a scholar or teacher of Amida Buddhism.

 

What Is Amida Buddha?

by Dr. Nobuo Haneda

 

In this essay ... I will define "Amida." ...

 

The Definition of "Amida"

Amida is "a personal symbol." ... Since "Amida" is a fictional character, he is (1) not a god (or a divine being) and (2) not a historical person.

 

First, Amida is not a god. ... "Amida" symbolizes certain spiritual qualities of human beings and does not have any superhuman (or divine) meaning.

 

Second, Amida is not a historical person. ... Amida never lived in a specific time and place.

 

 

"Amida" symbolizes ... our deepest reality, our true selves, ... ( he most likely refer to what I name here Ultimate Reality. )

 

http://www.livingdharma.org/Living.Dharma....ida-Haneda.html

 

I have interpreted him from my atheist point of view. Which will be obvious if you read that text.

 

Now I don't doubt that most Amida Buddhists see that Ultimate Reality as spiritual or something more than just matter and physical energy.

 

But I am not that kind of atheist. I trust that everything is matter and physical energy. But I am still fond of imaginary gods and wonder if that would work.

 

I mean if a very symbolic Amida work almost as a god for the Amida Buddhists why wouldn't an imaginary symbol like an inner god in matter and physical energy also work for me and other atheists who see value in material things?

 

Church of The Inner Light could have Energy/Matter as what is Holy to us? The Sun is matter, we could be Sun Worshipers and symbolically talk about our inner Sun God the Inner Light that warms us with its compassion? We could listen together each Sunday to the workings of the Inner Light.

 

The Big Bang could be the Creator of all that exists. And the Inner Light refers back the Big Bang?

 

My imagination is not very creative but would it not be possible to meet and sing and dance and praise the Inner Light and that would make life rather fun instead of like now there is none to meet and none to talk to but if I am not alone in worship the sun light which I know that I am not then the inner light could maybe work as a functional symbol for matter/energy reality. A totally or fully atheistic reverence for reality as it is?

 

Our holy book will be Scientific papers that describe models of reality. For ever updated with the latest physical evidence for it.

 

Formally maybe it could be named BioFriendly Scientism?

 

will it work or is it too crazy and not realistic?

 

In case Scientism is a new word to you. Scientific American columnist Michael Shermer has praised Scientism.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Shermer 2002-06 The Shamans of Scientism

 

Now there are a lot of Christians that don't like Scientism cause they support Intelligent Design instead and Scientism support Evolution to be more likely.

 

So Scientism is a bit like Biologism, it is seen as a faith in Reductionism. That we simplify things too much. I see reductionism as a tool to greater understanding and tools are as good as the understanding the user have for how to apply the tool. To be a wise user.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Note: All Regularly Contributing Patrons enjoy Ex-Christian.net advertisement free.
Now I don't doubt that most Amida Buddhists see that Ultimate Reality as spiritual or something more than just matter and physical energy.

 

But I am not that kind of atheist. I trust that everything is matter and physical energy. But I am still fond of imaginary gods and wonder if that would work.

 

I mean if a very symbolic Amida work almost as a god for the Amida Buddhists why wouldn't an imaginary symbol like an inner god in matter and physical energy also work for me and other atheists who see value in material things?

 

Welcome to the forums biofriendly.

 

I am not an Amida Buddhist, but if you trust that "everything is matter and physical energy" I can't quite understand why an imaginary image would work all that well for you. Wouldn't that give you a sort of feeling like "I am fooling myself, its not actually real, but I just like it anyway while worshipping it?" I just can't see how that would inspire much devotion, unless its the same type of feeling one would give to a beautiful painting.

 

The rest of your post I am afraid I do not understand.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Apart from having to take 42 vows, meditate daily, and chant mantras all the time, I guess Amida Buddhism sounds OK.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Super Moderator
Could an imagined god still work?

 

Since all gods are imagined it seems some of them work somewhat for some people some of the time.

 

It wouldn't work for me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, it's like this. Since mathematicians are allowed to have imaginary numbers, then you are equally allowed to have imaginary friends. Just don't proselytize to anyone.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can see where there could be a connection with that inner light. Many people believe in the Divine nature of humans. The divine is in us and we are in the divine, so if we are the divine and the divine is in us then we can commune with that divine and we do not need churches or temples or organized religion to tell us how to do that. When we do good things for each other, the divine is good. When we do evil things to each other, the divine is evil. Praying to the divine is simple meditation and contemplation on what bothers you in life. Meditation works to focus on our problems. I do think that one can get lost in repetitive mantra and wind up focusing on the mantra rather than the problem. If you want to celebrate the inner light or divine with singing and dancing then, go for it. But, if you did celebrate the inner light with singing and dancing and Amida is just a symbol, and not god, then wouldn't you just be celebrating yourself?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest biofriendly

Thanks for a warm friendly welcome and very interesting answers from all of you.

 

Yes I know it sure could feel like cheating or trying to fool oneself or to celebrate oneself but the inner light is supposed to refer to that which is in all of us so one could accuse it to be human-centric and all the aliens could feel left out. :D

 

So I guess that Church would need to say that they refer to the Big Bang as the start of the Inner Light and that would make all the Aliens included in the Big Bang and the Inner Light.

 

I guess it would be a celebration of our ability to cooperate and altruism and such biological inherited traits in humans.

 

What I like about the Jodo Shinshu variant of Amida Buddhism is that they only see it as a way to thank the infinite light for it's compassion.

 

Now there is no physical evidence that Big Bang has compassion. so it is a faith thing. One commit to a way to see reality on anthropomorphic terms.

 

If that feels like cheating I don't know. One have to test it to know.

 

HereticZero, you gave a good short take on it. No it is not to celebrating ones own Ego. It is to be humble about that one could fail and that one need others and for that to work one need to be listening to how they see the world and be open for negotiating and mediating and sort things out to get consensus and agreement. Such could be humbling cause it is not easy to get agreement on things. Politics and preferences abound instantly.

 

But I agree wit hall of you that it seems utterly naive cause if it had any chance of working then it would be many such groups already cause it is so naive and basic so maybe most people realize it would not work and they don't want to embarrass themselves with being public about them being so naive to propose it.

 

That I do it is more like in desperation. I need new friends and fail to go to a church cause that would be too much pretending on my part.

 

Ordinary Zen and Tibetan Buddhism fails for me. Amida is not ideal either for me. They make a lot of claims I fail to support and to say Namo Amida Bu so often as they seems to suggest looks too much like the Hare Krishna mantra to me.

 

My naive suggestion for this Church of the inner Light would be that one had no such chanting. One could sing ordinary pop songs instead.

 

I mean if the Inner Light is as intelligent as we are then it get that we do it out of joy so that would be totally ok to do. I would not give much for an Inner Light that required a kind of admiration for to work. If it exists at all it get my kind intention if I sing songs like

 

"Am I not pretty enough?" or "I changed the Lock on my front door so you can not come in" or Woody Guthry's "So long, its been good to know you"

 

:D

 

dancing and drumming and making joyful noise would be cool and if the Inner Light don't like it then we find another symbol that accept it.

 

One should be open to changes and not be dogmatic about symbols.

 

What I guess would fail is that it is not mystic enough. It is too easy to look through?

 

People seems to require something very mystic. Walking on water or turning water into wine? Being one with the Universe or something profound.

 

To just feel happy about making noise together is too childish?

 

What do you say folks. is it too naive obviously? There is something about it that I really like. 100% naturalistic and giving matter it's proper value as the Mother of us all.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines.