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Does anyone has an answer
August 18, 2000
7:44 pm
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Hazza.

Thanks for a very well written and thoughtful response. I can see that we think alike. I wonder if that is why I delighted in reading about your views so much. 🙂

I know practically nothing about the Pythagorean philosophy of life. However, I intend to read as much as I can find on the topic.

I often envy people of great faith. When I was a 'practicing' Christian, I always identified with the apostle, St.Thomas. I was a doubting Thomas. However, I never got to poke my fingers into the open wound of the risen Christ. So... I guess that I will have to go on doubting. I find myself reflecting upon the fact that the gospels of St.Thomas were among the writings rejected by Rome. Was it that Thomas, because of a sharp intellect, probed Christ for deeper answers to deeper questions? His writings seem to indicate this to be so. I suspect that Christ did have some really powerful answers that would stand the scrutiny of even the most rigorous logical analysis. Maybe Thomas found this to be true. But I doubt I would find those profound messages in the bible. I think that they have been well and truly 'expunged' by the spiritually obtuse but politically cunning rulers of early Christian Rome.

If Christ was to return, I can see myself 'hammering' him with questions. I suspect that I would not be disappointed. As that is not likely to happen in my present life time, I will have to remain an agnostic. If there is another life for me after this one, either on earth of in some other dimension, then I will still be asking the same questions.

The starting point of my 'liberation' was the realisation that ignorance was my lot, like it or lump it. I had a startling experience in deep meditation of seeing 'absolute' reality. I could only bring back three things from that experience:

(1) the memory of the elation that I felt.

(2) the vague memory of the simplicity yet elegance of that 'reality'.

(3) the knowledge that I had seen 'absolute' reality.

I have since read that this type of experience is not uncommon amongst the recalls of many Near Death Experiencers.

What I have derived from this experience is the belief that I am 'not meant to know'. This was my starting point. It may be that 'enlightenment' terminates our romp in this domain. Is this what happened to the Buddha and Christ? Did they find out over many lifetimes? The words of Christ "Who is it that they say that I am?" etc and the absense of his denial of previous incarnations, seem to bear out Christ's previous incarnations.

After having read the literature, and having personally undergone hypnotic regression and experienced recall of supposed past lives, I still really don't know beyonf doubt whether there is life after life here on earth.

I suspect that the probability that there is continuity of all life in cyclic patterns is high. I believe that there is a high probability that there is a supreme life force from which all things originate.

I suspect that time itself is an experiential construct tied to the illusory 'cause preceding an effect' observations of the 'sequential' firings of the neurons of our brain. That some people can seemingly predict the 'future' would seem to indicate the existence of the 'akoshic record' of all events, past present and future. Such a record could only exist beyond time in a Mind unconstrained by the space-time continuum that we observe.

However, it seems to me that our ignorance of the above is essential for us to experience the drama of life as we know it. This is why I am a spiritually inclined 'agnostic'. 🙂 I live in hope that my agnosticism will 'one day' be converted by the experience of absolute reality into Thiesm. At this stage of my growth, I suspect and conjecture that if a God exists then we are that God, isolated from our Higher Self and others in that ignorance, by our 'egos'.

However, I cannot claim to 'know' beyond any doubt the existence of a God. This is the basic tenet of my agnosticism. The best that I can do is say that I believe that I have experienced things that may well have been previous lives and the presence of God. But I would hate to try to prove anything beyond doubt. Even Descarte failed in that endeavour!

I believe that all is belief.:-) In this regard, the saying that 'all is vanity' has profound implications.

August 21, 2000
8:12 am
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hazza
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Hey there Tez.
god I need to be awake with you around - and I am not right now!!!

well, the points you make (and I can't really be bothered to cut and paste - so you will just have to understand what parts I mean) are similar to ponts made by Chaucer back in the middle ages and all sorts of dudes wince and before then. The fact that we are NOT omnipotent and therefore cannot see the whole picture and so therefore not in a position to understnad how everything meshes together. Just because it SEEMS that the world is incoherent and full of anomolies, doesn't mean it is - that is just our perspective, not being able to see the whole picture.

can any one ant see the beauty and formation of a whole line of ants? or does he just see the one infront and follow him? (okay he follows the pheromones probably - but that is not very poetic is it?!)

one Sunday back in 87 My grandad sat down and wrote "this is probably the last words I shall write on the subject I have studied all my life...." he promptly dropped down dead half way through the following Monday, but in this writing he elaborated on his pythagorean views.

He reckoned that pythagoras taught that we are different to animals, and have this "human condition" because of MEMORY.

memory alone seperates us from animals who live more intune with instincts.

because of memory, we do not have 5 sense, but we have 10.
we have sight, taste, smell, hearing and touch. but we also have their SUBJECTIVE counterparts.
The memory of the smell of a rose, the imagined sound of music and so forth.

what the point of this is, I don't know! I guess I am a lousy pythagorean, but I have always loved the thinking around this stuff that the ancient greeks did.

I will re-read his words and find out what he was on about and keep you posted.

But to go from such free thinking to the dark abyss of the christian era and the dark ages has always left me with the feel that we back tracked somehow.

I am a firm believer in Lost knowledge. I think we are far too patronising of ancient civilisations.
only now are we starting to see how much they knew of atrology and other matters.

the maya seemed to be able to pinpoint the solor flares and cycle of sun spots and so on.

how much of this knowledge frightened the pants of those in power?

how much more valuable was knowledge then than it is even today?

far better to call things a miracle, magic or evil godly wraths that to let Joe Public into the realities of science that they were learning.

How leonardo had to work in secret and code his writings just to examine the tendons in a hand or the theories of flight.

Even Einstein, too afraid of what Relativity unleashed, re wrote his theory to "stop" the universe actually being an expanding one - even then the thought of going against the establishment was enough to make him doubt himself.

knowledge has and always will be dangerous.

religion was the best way of crowd control ever.

Cant remember what film it was that said something like "a human being is intellignet, but human beings (plural) are dumb, fearful and panicky" no doubt some film about the asteroid about to hit us!

We have spent centuried trying to understand ourselves. The biggest question we seem to have is WHY we question at all?

we cannot cope with there just not being answers sometimes. so we make it up. or we fear the truth and make it more palatable - without a concern to TRUTH.

Have you read much on the Ancient egyptians? this was wherea lot of the greek stuff came from.
Pythagoras apparently spent 40 yrs or something learning at the temples in egypt.

would I LOVE to know what he learned there! would i LOVE to walk around that old library at Alexndria before it was detroyed.

My mind has always been turned on by truth. bottom line, I don't care what that truth is, it just has to be TRUE! even if the answer is Dull, better than an elborate lie.

August 23, 2000
4:44 pm
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Hazza

A great response.

You said, "…Well, the points you make are similar to points made by Chaucer back in the middle ages and all sorts of dudes since and before then." Yes…this is true. I have, over a long time, been putting together a jigsaw in my head. I now have a coherent model that seems to provide me with satisfactory rational answers that has so far not failed to explain the ‘why’ of every event so far encountered in my life to date. This is not to say that I believe that I ‘know’ the objective truth about absolute reality. I would hardly be agnostic if I did. The thing that has staggered me is that a great many philosophers have come to the same conclusions. Have I remembered past live beliefs? Or have I simply followed the same old time worn trail of rationalising as those before me? Interesting.

You said, "Just because it SEEMS that the world is incoherent and full of anomalies, doesn't mean it is - that is just our perspective, not being able to see the whole picture." I used to be this way. Not so now. I may have given you this impression because of my questioning of Christian beliefs.

Regarding the "10 senses" and "memory separating us from animals", I think that I can understand the point that your grandad made. I have been beating the "emotional" versus "contextual" memory drum for some time. I believe that I may have found a gem within the latest research into the emotions. Dr LeDoux, (NYU) clearly differentiates between an "emotional memory" and the "memory of an emotional experience". Animals have emotional memory; this we know. An animal will quickly learn (Conditioned response) to fear a hunter (Conditioned stimulus) and will recall the emotion of fear into arousal on seeing a hunter (instincts). But it is doubtful that animals can remember past events wherein they can remember feeling fearful and why, when threatened by a hunter (SUBJECTIVE counterparts). LeDoux recently found that the five senses can trigger us into emotional arousal DIRECTLY (instinctively) without recourse to our cognitions (SUBJECTIVE counterpart). Of course our cognitions can trigger, maintain or dissipate emotional arousal. The interesting implication here is that given sufficient insights, realisations and practice, our cognitions can directly and consciously control our emotional arousal. Mature people have usually acquired some significant degree of control over how they feel. SO… the implication is that if we do not want to suffer then we had better learn about the interplay between our emotional memories (instincts and their triggers) and our cognitions (SUBJECTIVE counterpart). No one here seems to realise the importance of the LeDoux findings. It’s as though we have been brainwashed into believing that our feelings are ALWAYS true indications of the state of our external reality (assuming that this reality exists independent of us) Intuition is often confused with emotion. We use the one word, "feel" to describe both. e.g. I just feel that he is telling a lie(intuition). I can feel it in my guts that I am threatened by his lie(emotion). Maybe this is why we nearly always believe that how we feel about something is how it actually is.

You said, "I will re-read his words and find out what he was on about and keep you posted." Please do… I would love to read what he has written. Maybe one day you could scan the docs and email them to me via Site Coordinator. That way neither you nor I have to risk being spammed by disclosing our email addresses publically .

I agree with you about the wisdom of the antiquities perhaps being superior to that held in esteem by us today.

"We have spent centuries trying to understand ourselves. The biggest question we seem to have is WHY we question at all?" As far as we know, we are the only species on earth that know the inevitability of our own death. This forces us to eventually question the seeming futility of a life filled with struggle to survive only to lose the battle in the end. Is all in vain? If so, such a thought is unpleasant. There seems to be a need to find meaning in our life of struggle and our eventual death. (Viktor Frankl) Alternatively we can find inherent value in every instantaneous experience independent of what consequence follows that event. Then final outcomes are all made irrelevant!!!

"We cannot cope with there just not being answers sometimes. so we make it up. or we fear the truth and make it more palatable - without a concern to TRUTH." How can one ever verify what is the absolute truth? All truth seems relative and subjective. All that we can get is a consensus of opinion on what is held in common as a 'truth'. But that proves nothing about the validity of a belief.

"Have you read much on the Ancient Egyptians? " Not a lot. "This was where a lot of the Greek stuff came from. Pythagoras apparently spent 40 yrs or something learning at the temples in Egypt." I knew this. I thought that it was 20 yrs. But what’s a few years here and there. : - )

"Would I LOVE to know what he learned there! Would I LOVE to walk around that old library at Alexandria before it was destroyed. " Yes… so would I. Thanks to Bishop Cyril and Christian ignorance we probably never will. How this butcher could reconcile his actions with the love preached by Christ, I will never know.

"My mind has always been turned on by truth. bottom line, I don't care what that truth is, it just has to be TRUE! Even if the answer is Dull; better than an elaborate lie." Wow! You are in for a hard time in finding what is factually true. Descarte said "I think therefore I am" This, he claimed as proof beyond doubt of the truth of the only thing about which he could certain; that is that ‘he’(Descarte as an entity) existed. This since has been discredited as proof. Thus, the only thing that I can say that is true beyond doubt is that there exists an awareness of a consciousness that thinks it is ‘me’. This doesn’t prove that ‘Tez’ exists. The humbling thing about this realisation is that all ‘knowledge’ is subjective and relative. As such it cannot be claimed as absolute truth. I’m sure that when every one thought that the earth was flat, it was considered absolutely true. We are constantly finding what we now consider to be mistaken beliefs of the past. Why should we arrogantly believe that any generally held beliefs in the year 2000 are actually ‘facts’

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