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Beyond Belief: Taking Spirituality Seriously

Posted Dec. 6, 2013 by dustproduction in Open

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commented on March 30, 2014
by dustproduction

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Many have argued that the world's problems may be ultimately 'spiritual' in nature, and much of the population, atheists and believers alike, claim to have a spiritual dimension to their lives. But what do we really mean by the spiritual?

A major new series rethinking the cultural and social value of spirituality, with speakers to include Madeleine Bunting, Robert Rowland Smith, Elizabeth Oldfield and Jonathan Rowson.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iyQILTtDUos&feature=em-subs_digest-vrecs

  • 13 Comments  
  • Anonymous Icon

    dustproduction Mar 30, 2014

    Re: In older languages like hebrew and sanscrit single words had blended concepts. For example 'dharma' refers to 'knowledge/understanding of all phenomena' . There is no single words in English that have such broad meaning.

    Interesting to note that only in matters for which there is no evidence, like spirituality, do we care about what people did thousands of years ago. And even in this things we do not attempt to understand them from a historical perspective, but rather a modern memetic one.

  • Anonymous Icon

    dustproduction Dec 19, 2013

    I'm not sure the reply answers the question of "to what end" we must be in acceptance of the things, "that are beyond our limited understanding."
    By "accept" do you mean place "belief in?"

    Let me make this analogy. People today make the claim that we need to save the planet, but the planet is beyond our limited control, and more to the point it will take care of itself as it has for a billion or more years. What they mean to say is that we need to save the conditions that allow us, humankind, to survive in this planet. We need to save ourself, not the planet.

    And BTW: did you listen to the discussion?

  • bestearth Dec 18, 2013

    To what end? There is a star a zillion millions across space. We may know it's is there but what difference does that star make to you in your daily physical existence for the relatively brief time you are here to experience it? If these things are beyond our limited understanding, why are we even attempting to discuss them?

    That star is a miracle and that makes a world of difference. English is the worst language in the world to have a discussion of a spiritual nature. It is an alpha-numerically reversed version of Hebrew. A backwords language that detunes the human instrument making it very hard for most of its users to feel connected to creation. I agree with Len Horowitz. I felt this all along and now I know why.

    In older languages like hebrew and sanscrit single words had blended concepts. For example 'dharma' refers to 'knowledge/understanding of all phenomena' . There is no single words in English that have such broad meaning.

    Those that can feel and have compensated for the crippling effects of this language choose to view life as a miracle. Whereas the disconnected person says that something distant has no effect on anything. The star has no effect? Stars have been one of the most awe inspiring motifs for artists and all great thinkers , the very looking at them requires one to look up and reach out for them. To wonder and feel in awe of creation and to become a creator.

  • mrmathew1963 Dec 18, 2013

    G'day DJA12

    Welcome to IONS DJA12, yes it is good to see others think in & outside the square depending on what kind of reasoning process they use.

    My wife & I haven't watched TV for over six yrs now, miss the docs but not the other mindless rubbish.

    I believe science will prove or disprove everything one day as long as it keeps evolving & doesn't get stuck on one reasoning process. Science & spirituality are the same to me they just use different reasoning processes.

  • Anonymous Icon

    dustproduction Dec 18, 2013

    re: We have to accept that there are things, such as spirits, that are beyond our limited understanding.

    To what end? There is a star a zillion millions across space. We may know it's is there but what difference does that star make to you in your daily physical existence for the relatively brief time you are here to experience it? If these things are beyond our limited understanding, why are we even attempting to discuss them?

  • DJA12 Dec 18, 2013

    Yesterdai I joined IONS and discovered this Discussion Group. I can't tell you how ecstatic I was to find people who can actually think. I was beginning to believe that most everyone knew more about the latest reality show than the remote viewing program of the military. I chose this because none of the friends and relatives I have ever heard of it. I retired 9-13 and decided since I had time now to write an educational blog
    scienceandspirituality.net . Science is not an enemy. Anyone who says they understand QM is a liar. We have to accept that there are things, such as spirits, that are beyond our limited understanding. Maybe understanding that there is something much greater may detract from our current obsession with material things.

  • Anonymous Icon

    dustproduction Dec 17, 2013

    Great point, we should be so lucky as to never have to heard it discussed ever again.

    However, there is a definition of spirit that I have referred to before that is not incorporated into what is spiritual: "those qualities regarded as forming the definitive or typical elements in the character of a person, nation, or group or in the thought and attitudes of a particular period."

    This seems to be the ancient meaning of the word that has been co-opted by those that were intent on selling religion.

  • NoetPoet Dec 17, 2013

    "The funny thing about "Spirit" is that is cannot be discussed, or even named."

    For something that cannot be discussed or even named, people sure do talk alot about this "Spirit"!

  • frequencytuner Dec 16, 2013

    The funny thing about "Spirit" is that is cannot be discussed, or even named. What we can discuss is the mind, the body, the earth, society and all the things we can effect change upon. "Spirit", however, is an experience beyond words aside from pale allegories and metaphors. It is like water. Imagine a bowl of water. Every thought that the mind grasps at is likened to poking a finger into the water. This causes ripples and distorts the clarity and calmness of the water for a while. The more we talk about it, the harder it is to understand. The more we try and 'know' about it, the less we can comprehend. The more we think about it, the harder it is to experience.

    The Beatles said it best: "Let it be".

  • NoetPoet Dec 16, 2013

    "Spirituality", "consciousness", "quantum", all of these make fine ingredients for any word salad.

    I suspect that when people say the world's problems are ultimately "spiritual" in nature, what they are trying to do is come off as profound and wise while simultaneously absolving themselves of any responsibility for actually tackling those problems in a realistic effective manner.

    When people say they have a "spiritual dimension" to their lives it usually means that they like to feel warm, fuzzy and personally significant from time to time.

  • Anonymous Icon

    dustproduction Dec 13, 2013

    How odd that a serious discussion regarding spirituality is not taken seriously.

  • Anonymous Icon

    dustproduction Dec 07, 2013

    Not wanting this discussion to drop down to far before others had the chance to see it.
    Like the word consciousness, the word spirit can refer to ideas and concepts that are very different, bth in the subjective sense and the objective sense; yin and yang.

    Many comment about their subjective spiritual sense, but might only notice an objective spirit of others in the negative sense. But this is both context and perception driven.

  • frequencytuner Dec 06, 2013

    I regularly bring all topics and discussions back to the concept of yin and yang, and for a good reason that this topic speaks to directly. If we consider spirit being the unmanifest, potential, wave-like matrix that underlies material reality, matter would be then the manifest, actual particles that constitute and form the concept of material reality. To take this one step further, consider the difference between 'reality', a video and a picture. Which one of these is truly fluid? The picture is but a single moment captured, a video is a series of consecutive moments captured and 'reality' is the fluid dynamic of the eternal process of change and evolution. One point to emphasize here is that the picture and video are strictly visual while the perception of 'reality' is dictated by all 5 senses.

    That being said, beyond material, physical reality, which is like the fish caught and plucked form the stream, lies the stream itself which all of this 'reality' springs forth from: spirit. It is like how consciousness does not need thought to exist, but thought needs consciousness to bring it into existence. In this light we understand that a fish plucked from a river with a deformity or disease must have obtained this condition from the water or something in the water. This water, or spirit, if it is tainted, will manifest physically in the same manner as a deformed fish from a toxic river. This "spiritual dimension" is more like the canvas, ink and artist while the material universe is the art: concepts to ponder.

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