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Weezer

VALIDITY OF QUOTE FROM JESUS (if he existed)

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As a behavioral and social scientist I have mulled over this concept for years.  Here is where I am at this time in my life.  The words attributed to Jesus,  "love your neighbor as yourself",  (a.k.a. the Golden Rule, predating him by centuries)  is a valid "truth", or philosophy, recognized by ancient thinkers, that is the "salvation" of  humanity.  Salvation, meaning the maximizing of human wellbeing, not a home in an afterlife.  It is found through a balance of concern for self and others.   Loving (taking care of) self, and doing what we can to help others do the same.  A concern about WE.  Not just ME.  When we lose that balance, we have problems.  Yes, there are times when it comes down to survival of self, but we are social creatures and need each other.  We need that balance.  For me, that is a valid "spirituality" for today.   Comments?

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Agree. I'm currently in a FB tiff with a guy who is a believer, but he keeps framing life and politics in terms of a fight. I recall that the churches I attended tended to frame things that way also, seeing any disagreement as demonic influences that needed to be fought. This guy takes it further and keeps talking about killing and dying for his "freedoms", and so I mentioned that he doesn't really seem interested in loving his neighbor (except the invisible unborn ones). The stinky homeless injured sick leeches that Jesus talked about helping in the parable of the Good Samaritan are just liberal scum to him. I think that churches are leaving behind the concepts of Jesus and embracing nationalism and wealth. But I chose not to bring up his religion, but instead remind him about loving his neighbors. His attitude changed, and that was wonderful.

 

I just watched a sci-fi series on Amazon based on Philip Dick's books. The last one was a society that had replaced most workers with robots, and they expected you to vote for "the candidate" (only one). The candidate started talking about the need to "kill all others", and left that very open-ended. Of course, "others" turns out to be anyone that doesn't go along with whatever is expected of them. Well beyond our current state, but a dystopian view that has roots in historic experiences of fascism. 

 

This also ties in with my previous posting about entheogenic psychedelics, which tend to move people towards empathetic views of inter-connectedness with other beings, rather than dividing and finding things over which to fight and be "right".

 

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If an idea has worth, it does so on the merit of the idea.  Whether or not it ever passed the lips of someone called Yeshua is utterly irrelevant.

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On 2/16/2020 at 1:44 PM, Weezer said:

As a behavioral and social scientist I have mulled over this concept for years.  Here is where I am at this time in my life.  The words attributed to Jesus,  "love your neighbor as yourself",  (a.k.a. the Golden Rule, predating him by centuries)  is a valid "truth", or philosophy, recognized by ancient thinkers, that is the "salvation" of  humanity.  Salvation, meaning the maximizing of human wellbeing, not a home in an afterlife.  It is found through a balance of concern for self and others.   Loving (taking care of) self, and doing what we can to help others do the same.  A concern about WE.  Not just ME.  When we lose that balance, we have problems.  Yes, there are times when it comes down to survival of self, but we are social creatures and need each other.  We need that balance.  For me, that is a valid "spirituality" for today.   Comments?

 

It's not just self preservation, though. It can also be a recognition of interconnection between all things.

 

Do unto others because you ARE others, as well as yourself. Because you are an aspect of mere existence itself at the very bottom of anything that you can possibly self identify with. The absolute core of anything, is common to everything.

 

So there's deeper reasons in edition to natural selection and it's effect on our social interactions. And that's where even more of the spiritual content comes into view. It's a very eastern spiritual content, but it's there for the taking. 

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23 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

 

It's not just self preservation, though. It can also be a recognition of interconnection between all things.

 

 

That is basically what I was trying to say.  The overall focus is on  "We."  Only during times when one's own existance is being threatened by others, do you focus on "me", and my survival.   I think we basically have the same thing in mind.

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I recently read an article about the differences in education between the U.S. and one of the Scandinavian countries (I don't remember which). The author discussed how American education concentrates on job skills while the system in the Scandinavian country concentrated on teaching a sense of community. Now that is a major simplification of a long article, but I do think we in the U.S. have become quite narcissistic, and the internet (think Facebook and Instagram selfies) has aided that. Add in our historical chauvinism (manifest destiny) and our lack of understanding of other cultures and you end up with a culture full of individuals who put the self first. Yes, there are notable exceptions, but I think there is an overall lack of community here. How can you "love your neighbor" if you not only don't understand how he or she thinks, or anything about his or her culture, but you don't even know his or her name?

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1 hour ago, Weezer said:

 

That is basically what I was trying to say.  The overall focus is on  "We."  Only during times when one's own existance is being threatened by others, do you focus on "me", and my survival.   I think we basically have the same thing in mind.

 

As an atheist I get why a lot of people just sort of let it all go and pay no more attention to any of it. If it's not literally true that gods exist, afterlife awaits, and everything else, then why bother with any of it? That's a good question. But I still like to live life imagining things, hoping for this or that, putting my consciousness in fixed directions, and what not. The only difference now is that I don't attribute god to any of it. Whatever I was doing before that seemed to work out ok, worked out ok regardless of the glaring point that god isn't real. And continues to work out now as time rolls on. The survival and making it was always the same, whether I thought a god had something to do with it or when I stopped believing that. Things keep falling into my lap at the right time. I'll take it!

 

I still try and do unto others, for instance. Why not?

 

It usually pays back in return anyways. I've helped people out, they have turned around and helped me out later. It goes back and forth. And it's very obvious to me now how evolution and natural selection plays into the back and forth. It's a great survival technique. A big network of people helping each other survive. And paying it forward and passing it along. That alone is one reason why things continuously fall into my lap and save the day. The network keeps it coming. 

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When my thoughts, actions, and words are all in agreement, I have harmony within.  When I have harmony within, I can live in harmony with others.

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