Wednesday, January 03, 2007

morality vs. direct experience.

there is absolutely no connection between direct experience of the divine and a morality as constructed by religion.

morality is designed by men who use religion to control society. morality varies between religions. what is moral in one religion is punishable by death in another.

divinity is a personal experience of neuro-chemistry stimulated by practice and devotion driven by a desire to experience, or determination to recreate an experience stumbled on by accident.

or something else entirely outside of our ability to understand.

either way, it`s nothing to do with religion.

the unfortunate truth is that most who seek answers to thier spiritual questions and a yearning for experience of the divine turn to the church for answers.

much like the fly asking the spider for a place to stay for the night.


jlhart7 said...

Thanks for the contribution to the discussion. I don't think human nature works like that, though.

dr.alistair said...

like what, like grasping at a means to control?
that is precisely what makes humans so insideous. the desire to bind others.........hiding behind the "aughts". notice there are very few people preaching about what they should do, it`s always about what others should do.
try reading nietzche or machiavelli without the moral gasping in feigned horror. you will begin to realise that these people were calling the game on control freaks, religious and political and social.

Charles Bergeman said...

I would be interested in hearing how you define "devinity".

I presume you are alluding to realizing ones potential. And in that context, I would agree.

I also agree that religion in it's many forms has been used to pacify or control masses of people.

Humans seem to crave common experience with groups of others like themselves who share their "values" and "beliefs".

This provides some comfort and reasurance that they will not confront unexpected behaviors from people around them.

Unexpected or mis-understood behaviors can make people uneasy or fearful which can result in conflict.

So-called spiritual questions seem to focus on issues that have no clear answer or remain a mystery.

Religions claim to have the answers and provide comfort to people who are disatisfied with the response they get from reality.

Relgion also sets the table for daily meals of sensory input which places everything where it is "supposed to be", and thwarts threats to ones belief system.

As for ones own "spiritual" persuits. I think this boils down to how much can we, within the limits of our being, understand and participate in the world around us.

We absorb experiences while retaining concsiousness of the impact that they have on our well being.

We make adjustments as we can to ensure that we remain healthy in mind and body and in tune in a positive way with our surroundings and our society.

This constitutes what I call my own spirit, and what I do to maintain it, without defference to a higher power or set of religious beliefs.

I set the table differently depending on my circumstances, surroundings and the people I am interacting with.

The answers are there if you take the time to observe and adjust your thinking and your actions to adapt to your surroundings.

Of course it is much easier to follow a recipe. Which religion provides to those who are lost.

dr.alistair said...

divinity as i define is is a direct knowlwdge or experience of god.
in many ways divinity is a part of our potential and can be a natural part of our growth, unless interfered with by outside agents with thier own agendas.
some of those agencies are, but are not limited to, church, state, corporations and family.
thanks for the post charles. i look forwaed to further discussion.

Charles Bergeman said...

I define the concept of god as the ultimate potential of a human being.

I use the word god as a symbol of perfection, rather than a reference to something I believe is real.

I cannot define precisely what that potential is, and if I could I would be a god.

The interference you describe I recognized when I was in High School. As pressures to choose a college and more social obligations got in the way of my pursuit of my own aspirations, I noted a drastic reduction in my productivity.

As responsibilities have stacked up in my life (I am now 47 with my own family) my ability to reach my personal potential has waned.

However, I am satisfied. My goal in life is not simply to reach my own potential, but also to help others come closer to theirs.

dr.alistair said...

it sounds to me as if you have reached some potential in that you are satisfied.
there are many out there who aspire to that as thier highest purpose.......
i also believe that divinity lies within all of us and that we create our reality as we go. picture and thought and word at a time.

Charles Bergeman said...

Actually I continue to aspire to the highest potential I can within the limits of the constraints I have placed on myself.

I have allowed myself to be constrained by responsibilities I have willingly accepted, and I have no regrets in regard to these constraints.

This is the source of my satisfaction. I do not aspire to perfection, as it is unacheivable.

The concept of perfection is illusive at best, as we, as flawed beings, are unable to conceive it.

Those who claim to aspire to perfection or worse claim to have acheived it, are delusional in my humble opinion.

dr.alistair said...

a large part of my work revolves around semantics.i would never use the term flawed to describe any human atribute or action. when we believe, even for a moment that we are flawed, then we give power and permission away. flaws are for diamonds........people are perfect representations.
when we look at what we do and how we act as representations then we can exert flexibility over the behaviours if we need to.....and find more effective ways to do things.
we then become a perfect representation of something else.......simple. no blame, to guilt, just another thing.

Light and Life said...

Nicely said, Doc

dr.alistair said...

thanks for saying so rev.

whatacharacter said...

Great discussion! I agree with what Charles says above about the "need" for religion - and if he didn't say it, I'd add the *need* we all have for social connections to further us along or own individual path ... as I commented below on the subject.

A Zen master once advised rather than wash each potato singley for cooking, stirring them all together in a vat, they scrub themselves.

To me the cultural western trend to distance ourselves from each other is worse than the opposite evils that avail themselves in "corporate" communion. Catch-22!

dr.alistair said...

catch 22 is right......but as alan watts said we are all connected. we are of nature, not seperate from it. the urge to know where we come from and the idea of a wise old guy up in the sky works to seperate us from our true divinity......the fact that we are connected already.


look at the next person and smile......see what happens?

dr.alistair said...

and yes, the need to have social connections is inate. people of like mind flock together to share energy. the mechanism works for stamp collectors as for coffee drinkers or poker players.
the abuse comes from the few who manipulate this natural process for power.

whatacharacter said...

Havent read any actual Watts in sometime, but accepting that we do share a sacred connection as living nodes along a flowing river of varying vital energies, who is to say we aren't just as connected - if not more - to an objective divine source. Like the highest refined sense of spiritual DNA maybe the relationship to the "father" - the wellspring of said river - takes priority over that of our brothers and sisters on this plane.

Also realizing that the connectedness between us human beans can be tenuous at best and often subject to concious recognition and the willful switch flipping to make a connect, I accept that other than a joint impersonal sharing of that river, we will find an inability to connect with certain folk on an ego interface, going several levels deeper than that!

dr.alistair said...

ego is a challenge, without a doubt.