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Questions to those who do or do not doubt Theosophy.

 
 
fresco
 
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Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2012 09:11 am
@mymightyrock,
Trust is not required...merely an open mind. From a sociological and psychological viewpoint, the function of religious belief is tribal and therapeutic (against fear of a meaningless existence). From childhood, human groups are bound together by common semantic fields , and rationalities, both of which manipulate "logic" and filter observation for their own ends. Belief systems function in the same manner (at the macro level) as hypnotic suggestion (at the micro level). Religious groups are merely co-followers of particular "hypnotic" protagonists who are elevated to the status of priest, guru etc. Within the subsequent power structures, the concepts of "esteric knowledge" and "access to truth" are part of a semantic construction largely equivalent to "the emperor's new clothes" in the well known children's story. Contrary to a humanhope for "the eternal", reform of such systems is inevitable in a changing epistemological zeitgeist.
mymightyrock
 
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Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2012 10:57 am
@fresco,
Quote:
Trust is not required...merely an open mind.

In the context of our conversation, what is the difference?


Quote:
From a sociological and psychological viewpoint, the function of religious belief is tribal and therapeutic (against fear of a meaningless existence).

True.


Quote:
From childhood, human groups are bound together by common semantic fields , and rationalities, both of which manipulate "logic" and filter observation for their own ends.

What is the purest form of logic (what does un-manipulated logic look like)?
What are these ends?


Quote:
Contrary to a humanhope for "the eternal", reform of such systems is inevitable in a changing epistemological zeitgeist.

Please clarify or reword. This is particularly interesting to me.
fresco
 
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Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2012 12:10 pm
@mymightyrock,
Un-manipulated logic might take forms that do not beg questions like the assumption of "a creator". On the other hand, I would agree that the application of "logic" is not critical per se, compared to the choice of premises.

Concepts of "the eternal", like those of "absolute" and "ultimate" are psychological attempts at closure with respect to human fear of the void. This fear is part of the price we pay as cognate beings with a concept of time, planning, and our own potential insignificance in cosmic terms. All religions pander to some aspect of that fear by the suggestion of a transcendent "key" to stability within the chaos. Physicists might call that key the TOE (theory of everything) but there is a general skepticism amongst them that it will ever be obtained. As epistemology (knowledge) advances, it merely suggests more questions to be answered. The "believer" might nod sagely at this point and argue that "all knowledge"is in the gift of his deity"...a catch all and vacuous rejoinder ...but in order to keep "on side" with scientific advances or sociological upheavals his belief system might need to adapt or become a laughing stock (as in the case of Christian fundamentalism).
mymightyrock
 
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Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2012 02:06 pm
@fresco,
Hmmm. While I think about what you just said please check your inbox.
0 Replies
 
mymightyrock
 
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Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2012 03:27 pm
@fresco,
Quote:
Un-manipulated logic might take forms that do not beg questions like the assumption of "a creator". On the other hand, I would agree that the application of "logic" is not critical per se, compared to the choice of premises.

It sounds to me like you are describing the idea that humans have choice in beliefs and that the only bad choice one can make is to believe in "a creator." What am I missing? I guess I am assuming that "premises" and "beliefs" are close enough in meaning that they can be interchanged in this context. Perhaps you could explain the difference (if you see one).

Quote:
Concepts of "the eternal", like those of "absolute" and "ultimate" are psychological attempts at closure with respect to human fear of the void. This fear is part of the price we pay as cognate beings with a concept of time, planning, and our own potential insignificance in cosmic terms.

Given that we are cognate beings, how do Theosophists find closure?

Actually after looking over the remainder of your post, my last question really sums up all of the other questions that arise. Furthermore, that same question might be critical to answering the original point of this thread. Possibly...
mymightyrock
 
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Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2012 03:44 pm
@fresco,
Yeah... I should have seen that coming. Those dang assumptions always get us. Thanks for your time, though. I look forward to reading your next response and will just let my contribution to the thread end at that. Got to get back to preachin'.

Peace.
0 Replies
 
fresco
 
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Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2012 03:46 pm
@mymightyrock,
I've little idea about the details of theosophical closure. To an atheist like me such details would be historical in origin, easily researched, but trivial in content as is the case in all religious belief systems. As indicated by my earlier reference, I follow Krishnamurti's line in the matter.

It is quite possible that your own concept of "self" is predicated on deistic concepts and that "self "will resist erosion of its "integrity". If that is the case, you will have little chance of understanding what I'm talking about.
Fil Albuquerque
 
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Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2012 07:18 pm
@fresco,
Krishnamurti´s line fit you perfectly Fresco ! Wink
Fil Albuquerque
 
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Reply Thu 29 Mar, 2012 08:07 pm
@Fil Albuquerque,
...going by his general take I suppose if I ask Fresco where concepts ultimately come from, he will reply quite obviously from more concepts...I also suppose that he is aware that this must be his version on "closure"... Laughing
0 Replies
 
Fido
 
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Reply Fri 30 Mar, 2012 07:28 am
@mymightyrock,
mymightyrock wrote:

As far as works go, Christ provided all of the evidence needed. If you cannot believe through His works, then there is nothing I can do to display the truth in love.

Nonetheless, the discussion is not about me and the question at hand remains unanswered.
Jesus is dead... If you want to make him live you have to make him live in you... No one as asking for miracles... Do the impossible... Do good without running anyone down or otherwise doing evil... You might find you do very little because there is little we can do one way or the other without the potential for causing more harm than we intend... Just don't let it happen... Think about it, or don't; but do good as good you can see... You don't need a bible or a phone book... All you need to do is care...
0 Replies
 
Fido
 
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Reply Fri 30 Mar, 2012 07:31 am
@mymightyrock,
mymightyrock wrote:

I should also add that the question relating to scripture is also out there (at least it seems to be in my mind). Scripture conveys spiritual truths. Each idea has a point and the point is always to help and edify the believer. The spiritual rules are not arbitrary or to make the believer feel elite or to give the believer a sense of power to condemn others (or any other evil reason that some people mistake it to be). The point of the Holy Spirit, the power of goodness that is responsible for the words, is to help people.

Therefore the question is: what is the point of the advice to avoid the occult? If the above paragraph seems debatable, then why? What do Theosophists believe is the reason for the author’s inclusion?

Scripture conveys spiritual confusion which is the main reason the catholic church never volunteered to open up than can of worms to the world...
seven times
 
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Reply Fri 30 Mar, 2012 07:54 am
@Fido,
Yes, but it is a type of confusion that we are able to sort out. He doesn't give us more than we can handle. Teachers give the more difficult problems to the more intelligent students. Right?
demonhunter
 
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Reply Fri 30 Mar, 2012 11:29 pm
@seven times,
TROLLosophy.
0 Replies
 
Fido
 
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Reply Sat 31 Mar, 2012 06:33 am
@seven times,
seven times wrote:

Yes, but it is a type of confusion that we are able to sort out. He doesn't give us more than we can handle. Teachers give the more difficult problems to the more intelligent students. Right?
Perhaps the majority of books written in Muslim countries are in relation to their religion, but it is still an insignificant number compared to the number written every year on the Bible and the meaning of the Bible... Ever since people started printing it they started killing each other over it... No doubt; intelligent people find an interpretation of the thing that fits with their moral sense and don't go far enough with it to do much damage; but it is a positive evil the more people buy into it... The Jews, if they were chosen must have been chosen as a bad example... If any body I knew cared to read it, I would say: Don't be like those damned Jews, because it was not for no reason that they have been hounded from place to place...But the Christians need to explain Jesus, and for that they need the Old Testament, and I will grant that Jesus, if people actually followed him, would be the perfect tonic for the formality and hypocracy of the establisment Hebrews...But with Protestantism we have seen Christians again become Jews, and act and think as Jews; so it is all for nonsense and pointless when people can figure out, and always have been able to figure out how to be good, even before they learned how to read...Like Hosea, and Joshua, the name of Jesus means salvation... You don't have to build a church around it... You don't need political influence or a tax dodge... Philosopher to philosopher; Jesus has my respect... He not only said his piece, but he played his hand most skillfully, or that bunch of thugs would have hung him on that cross much sooner than they did... Just as they would hang him up today if the opportunity were to arise...No Muslim hates Jesus; and no one hates Jesus so much as the Christians... He was not given to form, or rules, or commandments; but not a single one of us could get through one day of our lives following the single commandment he taught...As Paul correctly suggested: We are all guilty under the law...Even the law of Jesus, as lax as that may be..
seven times
 
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Reply Sat 31 Mar, 2012 02:12 pm
@Fido,
Quote:
but it is still an insignificant number compared to the number written every year on the Bible and the meaning of the Bible... Ever since people started printing it they started killing each other over it...

Beware the leaven of the hypocrites.

Quote:
No doubt; intelligent people find an interpretation of the thing that fits with their moral sense and don't go far enough with it to do much damage; but it is a positive evil the more people buy into it...

I have never met a positive evil other than in the form of an illusion. I understand the concept; however this may require further discussion if you consider it to be worthwhile for me to understand.

Quote:
The Jews, if they were chosen must have been chosen as a bad example... If anybody I knew cared to read it, I would say: Don't be like those damned Jews, because it was not for no reason that they have been hounded from place to place...But the Christians need to explain Jesus, and for that they need the Old Testament, and I will grant that Jesus, if people actually followed him, would be the perfect tonic for the formality and hypocrisy of the establishment Hebrews...But with Protestantism we have seen Christians again become Jews, and act and think as Jews; so it is all for nonsense and pointless when people can figure out, and always have been able to figure out how to be good, even before they learned how to read...Like Hosea, and Joshua, the name of Jesus means salvation... You don't have to build a church around it... You don't need political influence or a tax dodge...

Both the followers of Jesus and the teachers of the law were Jews. Also, believers are considered the New Israel. Furthermore, Jesus rebuked his disciples many times however they are still considered the "good" guys. Maybe we need to look at this idea closer. I agree that there is a difference between follower and crucifier; however it probably isn't fair to simply say "Jews."

Quote:
He was not given to form, or rules, or commandments; but not a single one of us could get through one day of our lives following the single commandment he taught...As Paul correctly suggested: We are all guilty under the law...Even the law of Jesus, as lax as that may be..


There is righteousness under the law; that is, it is possible to follow the law, however it is very difficult. Christ did it, because He is the Law. It is through looking at the Law, by looking at the life of Christ (or through examining the Old Testament version if one so desires that approach) that we become aware of our sin.

There is also righteousness under grace. However the challenge of grace-righteousness lies in its simplicity. Grace righteousness is simply a matter of believing.

While at first glance, following the law appeals to the intellect (because we can easily see how the law is good), it eventually falls short (falling short is not by the law itself , but by attempting to follow the law ). It requires a perfection that we do not have. However, following the law to completion is exactly what Christ did with His life and death and resurrection. And from that point grace becomes available to sinners....

Where we fall short, we have Christ's sacrifice, given that we believe it. Granted, faith that is truly faith will manifest itself in works (just as a tree is known by its fruit). However, it is Christ that does the work and not us, and so these works are not considered our righteousness. Our faith in Christ as an atonement for our sins, however, is.
Fido
 
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Reply Mon 2 Apr, 2012 06:42 am
@seven times,
Nonsense... If those old testament people had ever followed the law they would not have preyed upon each other, and weakened themselves before their enemies so that their destruction was made unavoidable... As we are doing today in this land with the help of that same sort of person who think you can go through the formal demands of a religion without ever having to consider the informal relationship with God, as Jesus did...The one fact that all people who believe in God have in common is that they all think God is stupid... I have an extensive Bible library and can't even say I believe in God or what I believe given that I know to little of anything to bother with belief where I know not... But if I did believe in God, the last thing I would believe is that God is stupid...I would not try to bribe him, and I would not try to hide anything in my heart from him/or it, or for that matter from anyone, if it were not necessary in some way... Religion for people is a front, and a form... That was the Jews: Go through the motions of belief and do what ever you can find a loophole for... Jesus was not alone in seeing the beginning and end of such behavior... Look at where the multitude of laws came from, and who they empowered...The law made Jeruselem rich, and it was a prize because of its wealth for the Romans to take..

Jesus did not obey the law, and he did not exactly counsel obediance to the law... He said do as the priests say, not what they do... He pointed out the priests walking by the man who the good Sameritan helped... He pointed out the way children would deny their obligation to the parents, and excuse the fact by saying it was for an offering... He said he was there to fulfill the law, not to obey it; but what does that mean... Just as in our time laws are written to be broken... Obstructions to bad behavior are disregarded, and people do what they see no harm in doing if they are not harmed... The law Jesus fulfilled is unwritten, and ever will be, but he stated it, as other Jewish philosophers have... Ones relationship with God is mirrored in ones relationship with ones fellow human beings... Those who hold God in contempt, thinking all one has to do to please God is formally laid out do not hold their fellow humans in a higher regard than they hold God, but even less...The law makes God small...The relationship with God makes God and everyone large...
0 Replies
 
 

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