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Losing the "I" in life

 
 
Treya
 
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 10:46 am
Christians promote God as being one who wants us to lose all the "I" in our life. But honestly, I don't think that's ever what this creator designed us to do. I think this creator designed us to think, reason, weigh our options, and make decisions. To completely lose the "I" in our life is to become a puppet on a string to the whims of mankind. How they interpret God, the bible, and all that.

It is how people become brainwashed, self righteous, and ignorant. Because they begin believing that subjecting themselves to these whims, perfecting their performance within them, sets them apart and above the rest of the world. It takes the responsibility off of themselves for their actions because what they do they do in "the name of God" and that is suppose to just make everything ok.

If this creator wanted us to be like that why would he give us a brain? Why would he give us the ability to think, reason, weigh our options, and make decisions? Free will? So we can use those abilities TO choose him and then LOSE the ability to do those things BY choosing him? That's absurd. Completely absurd.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 1,485 • Replies: 22
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neologist
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 11:07 am
Are you saying you believe in free will?
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Treya
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 11:47 am
Yes. Obviously we have the abilities to choose different things. However, the concept that a god would give us the ability to choose so we could throw it away once we "believe" in and "follow" him is a faulty one I think.
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neologist
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 11:49 am
Treya wrote:
Yes. Obviously we have the abilities to choose different things. However, the concept that a god would give us the ability to choose so we could throw it away once we "believe" in and "follow" him is a faulty one I think.
I don't think that fits in with the scriptures.
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Treya
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 11:51 am
Ok. Unfortunately a lot of what is promoted by christianity isn't though neo. But please explain what you mean.
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wandeljw
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 11:55 am
I have heard pastors say people often forget that one-half of "The Golden Rule" is to love yourself.
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neologist
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 11:57 am
I'll have to bookmark this and come back.
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IFeelFree
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 12:01 pm
The "I" or ego, as self-esteem or sense of self-worth, should be strengthened in a person who is psychologically fragile. However, when a person is sufficiently mature, they become capable of surrender -- to God, to a cause they believe in, to another person, to some altruistic goal, etc. True surrender is not the act of a weak person, but of a mature person.

A higher spirituality is based on transcending the ego or mind-based sense of "I" by surrender to the conditions of existence, or the now. By living fully in the present moment, the agenda of the ego is undermined. One lives in surrender to what is, rather than anticipating the future or dwelling on the past. God is found only in the present moment. When there is inner stillness, the silent Presence of God is felt.

We must use our intellect and moral judgment, of course, and that can happen most easily when we are fully present, surrendered, alert and open to what is. Instead of reacting against a situation, you merge with it, and the solution arises out of the situation itself. Then you take the right action that is appropriate to the whole.
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Treya
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 12:04 pm
Ok. No problem neo. You are right wandle. How much does someone love them self if their every thought, idea, perception, and what not is subject to what they think this god wants? If god doesn't love this every thought, idea, perception, whatever, there then becomes a conflict of interests because now they have to change that in order to please this "being" which is ultimately leads to not being true to themselves.

That's not freedom. That's not release. That's bondage and misunderstanding of what we were created to be. Which is whatever it is we are.
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Treya
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 12:12 pm
Please don't misunderstand me IFeelFree. I'm not saying we're meant to be selfish self-centered, egotistical beings that never think of anything other than what WE need or want. However, I think this concept of surrendering completely those things in order to meet the needs of others is dangerous. It is actually selfish on it's own level because then the motive to do things becomes not really to help whoever, it is to keep this god happy and not sending us to hell. That's just as selfish as the people who don't do those things are accused of being.
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Ashers
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 07:13 pm
I do see an interesting contrast in discussion of the "I" between religions, what with moral action so often the focal point. To me, the sense of losing the "I" as noted here is somewhat childish and unhelpful (so I agree with the absurdities mentioned). From more of an eastern or mystic perspective though it's like ridding yourself of all possessions in some aesthetic action that lacks the deeper understanding behind aesthetics itself. I prefer the Middle Way. To purposefully rid yourself of possessions because of attachment to possessions just shifts the object of attachment somewhere else because it fails to see that attachment revolves around relationship which means that the issue is as much a matter of self/ego as it is of outward action or possession. The idea of loss of "I" in Taoism, in my eyes, is about seeing the interconnectedness of all things, in each and every moment there is no rigid division between myself and my perception which cements the "I" but is about seeing the relationship/process that each moment represents. The loss of the "I" here is not some denial or a withdrawal of oneself from life but a full embrace of it. The awareness of this means each moment is not about me but there is simply...each moment. Well anyway I agree, surrendering something to please God or to gain a more meaningful reward at some later point, is no surrender at all, not on any meaningful level IMHO.
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mushypancakes
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 08:13 pm
The real problem, if I understand you correctly, is not with surrender or letting go of egotistical ways in itself, so much as throwing all sense to the wind to do it.
Like the brain, and parts of yourself must be abandoned.
In place of your own brain, there are the words of someone who claims to know what god is all about.

That is becoming a puppet. It's not honest. Not honest, so how can it NOT be egotistical?

Takes guts and surrender, at least some, to say that you don't know. Or that you know you choosing something not particularly good, but choose it anyways. Or that you are clueless and egotistical, too. Yet that's basically true of most of us.

Easier not to do that.

If I understand what you are saying, you are speaking of hypocrisy.
Someone claims to be 'holy' 'selfless' 'surrendered and working from the will of god', and yet all that they do comes from an ego place.
Say one thing, do the opposite.
Like the gay minister who preaches that homosexuality is against god in public, yet he's meeting guys behind closed doors.

It's like a form of insanity, almost, because a person must reject parts of themselves to hold to some ideal they believe is God. Or whatever.

And in this insanity, they can't see that it is themselves punishing themselves - not god - when they do wrong or make a mistake.

It's quite messed up. How couldn't it be, if you must reject your own sense and brain; and so can't understand things for yourself, whether you screw up big time or not.

Yeah, that is a bad deal all around.

Excuse me for going on: but it makes me think of some good advise I got recently.
To not be afraid to be a fool.
Fools learn a lot by experiencing what works and what doesn't directly.

Thought that was a good one. Made me laugh.
0 Replies
 
IFeelFree
 
  1  
Reply Fri 27 Jul, 2007 10:27 pm
Ashers wrote:
The loss of the "I" here is not some denial or a withdrawal of oneself from life but a full embrace of it. The awareness of this means each moment is not about me but there is simply...each moment.

The loss of the "I" is the loss of identification of self with body, mind, emotions, perceptions, personal circumstances, etc. The sense of self shifts to pure consciousness or inner Presence, the higher Self. It is not a withdrawal from life but a withdrawal from identification with mental concepts of the self. You are fully present, aware, still, alert, open to what is. You become one with every situation that arises. Instead of reacting against situations, you merge with them. Right action arises out the situation itself.
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echi
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jul, 2007 09:49 am
the sense of self shifts shells by the seashore

Razz
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JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jul, 2007 10:48 am
I really appreciate Ashers' phraseology: "The loss of the "I" here is not some denial or a withdrawal of oneself from life but a full embrace of it."
To be "nothing" in this sense is to be "everything."

Echi, are you alluding to the emptiness of sea shells on the seashore? The Maya number system used the sea shell image to stand for the value of "zero.".
0 Replies
 
echi
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jul, 2007 11:18 pm
Of course that's what I meant. I would never make an attempt at humor unless there was some deeper meaning to it. (duh)





just kidding!
I never heard of that before--pretty cool.
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kevnmoon
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Aug, 2007 05:21 pm
... " Why is knowledge of the attributes and Names of God Almighty connected to the 'I'?
The Answer: Since an absolute and all-encompassing thing has no limits or end, neither may a shape be given to it, nor may a form be conferred on it, nor may it be determined; what its quiddity is may not be comprehended. For example, an endless light without darkness may not be known or perceived. But if a line of real or imaginary darkness is drawn, then it becomes known. Thus, since God Almighty's attributes, like knowledge and power, and Names, like All-Wise and All-Compassionate, are all-encompassing, limitless, and without like, they may not be determined, and what they are may not be known or perceived. Therefore, since they do not have limits or an actual end, it is necessary to draw a hypothetical and imaginary limit. The 'I' does this. It imagines in itself a fictitious dominicality, ownership, power, and knowledge: it draws a line. By doing this it places an imaginary limit on the all-encompassing attributes, saying, "Up to here, mine, after that, His"; it makes a division. With the tiny units of measurement in itself, it slowly understands the true nature of the attributes.
For example, with its imagined dominicality over what it owns, the 'I' may understand the Dominicality of its Creator over contingent creation. And with its apparent ownership, it may understand the true ownership of its Creator, saying: "Like I am the owner of this house, so too is the Creator the owner of the universe." And with its partial knowledge, it may understand His knowledge, and with its small amount of acquired art, it may understand the originative art of the Glorious Maker. For example, the 'I' says: "As I made this house and arranged it, so someone must have made the universe and arranged it," and so on. Thousands of mysterious states, attributes, and perceptions which make known and show to a degree all the Divine attributes and functions are contained with the 'I'. That is to say, the 'I' is mirror-like, and, like a unit of measurement and tool for discovery, it has an indicative meaning; having no meaning in itself, it shows the meaning of others. It is a conscious strand from the thick rope of the human being, a fine thread from the raiment of the essence of humanity, it is an Alif from the book of the character of mankind, and it has two faces.
The first of these faces looks towards good and existence. With this face it is capable of only receiving favour; it accepts what is given, itself it cannot create. This face is not active, it does not have the ability to create. Its other face looks towards evil and goes to non-existence. That face is active, it has the power to act. Furthermore, the real nature of the 'I' is indicative; it shows the meaning of things other than itself. Its dominicality is imaginary. Its existence is so weak and insubstantial that in itself it cannot bear or support anything at all. Rather, it is a sort of scale or measure, like a thermometer or barometer, that indicates the degrees and amounts of things; it is a measure that makes known the absolute, all-encompassing and limitless attributes of the Necessary Being."...................

B. Said Nursi 30.Word
0 Replies
 
kevnmoon
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Aug, 2007 05:23 pm
... " Why is knowledge of the attributes and Names of God Almighty connected to the 'I'?

The Answer:

Since an absolute and all-encompassing thing has no limits or end, neither may a shape be given to it, nor may a form be conferred on it, nor may it be determined; what its quiddity is may not be comprehended.

For example, an endless light without darkness may not be known or perceived.

But if a line of real or imaginary darkness is drawn, then it becomes known.

Thus, since God Almighty's attributes, like knowledge and power, and Names, like All-Wise and All-Compassionate, are all-encompassing, limitless, and without like, they may not be determined, and what they are may not be known or perceived.

Therefore, since they do not have limits or an actual end, it is necessary to draw a hypothetical and imaginary limit.

The 'I' does this. It imagines in itself a fictitious dominicality, ownership, power, and knowledge: it draws a line.

By doing this it places an imaginary limit on the all-encompassing attributes, saying, "Up to here, mine, after that, His"; it makes a division. With the tiny units of measurement in itself, it slowly understands the true nature of the attributes.

For example, with its imagined dominicality over what it owns, the 'I' may understand the Dominicality of its Creator over contingent creation. And with its apparent ownership, it may understand the true ownership of its Creator, saying: "Like I am the owner of this house, so too is the Creator the owner of the universe." And with its partial knowledge, it may understand His knowledge, and with its small amount of acquired art, it may understand the originative art of the Glorious Maker.

For example, the 'I' says: "As I made this house and arranged it, so someone must have made the universe and arranged it," and so on. Thousands of mysterious states, attributes, and perceptions which make known and show to a degree all the Divine attributes and functions are contained with the 'I'.

That is to say, the 'I' is mirror-like, and, like a unit of measurement and tool for discovery, it has an indicative meaning; having no meaning in itself, it shows the meaning of others.

It is a conscious strand from the thick rope of the human being, a fine thread from the raiment of the essence of humanity, it is an Alif from the book of the character of mankind, and it has two faces.

The first of these faces looks towards good and existence. With this face it is capable of only receiving favour; it accepts what is given, itself it cannot create.

This face is not active, it does not have the ability to create. Its other face looks towards evil and goes to non-existence. That face is active, it has the power to act.

Furthermore, the real nature of the 'I' is indicative; it shows the meaning of things other than itself.

Its dominicality is imaginary.

Its existence is so weak and insubstantial that in itself it cannot bear or support anything at all.

Rather, it is a sort of scale or measure, like a thermometer or barometer, that indicates the degrees and amounts of things; it is a measure that makes known the absolute, all-encompassing and limitless attributes of the Necessary Being."...................

B. Said Nursi 30.Word
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Aug, 2007 05:45 pm
We are that we are.
0 Replies
 
kevnmoon
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Aug, 2007 06:08 pm
We are mirror that we are mirror..
0 Replies
 
 

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