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Is man even a spiritual being?

Discussion in 'General Scientology Discussion' started by Feral, Jul 24, 2011.

  1. good only has meaning to meat puppets in relation to themselves but to those who gain a sense of something greater than themselves it good begins to open it's philosophic spiritual and religious meaning. this dimension is born in us mostly from our love of our children as was noted by the nazarene

    speaking of children, i got from one of your recent posts you have a relationship with your kids from your first wife. you were cut off from them when we met years ago. is their mother still jam up and jelly tight with CoS?
  2. yes
  3. Mystic

    Mystic Crusader

    Is a jellyfish even a spiritual being?
  4. jvice

    jvice New Member

    Quite frankly, there is no straight up answer I can give you for this. For one, there are different levels by which humans work and that is more evident in religion.

    I have a couple of friends who have been die hard with their belief only to fall short after all those times because they finally realize something that is not working well with them.

    But in most cases, people always find that way to still hold onto some belief.
  5. Mystic

    Mystic Crusader

    I have been assimilated.
  6. Gadfly

    Gadfly Crusader

    To me, as I see it, there seems to be some sort of "mind" or "spirit" or "intention" that creates and defines all the patterning and organization that is obviously evident at every level of manifestation (including anything physical and mental).

    Call it whatever you want, but it comes down to this. Is it feasible that the extreme patterning and incredible organization of all of these things, from the smallest sub-atomic particle to the largest galaxy, are an "accident", meaning that it just "happened" without any sort of "agency" or "cause"?

    The notion that bodies are "meat puppets" being "run by a thetan" is grossly over-simplistic. It brings about a sort of Medieval attitude where anything "physical" is "bad", to be shunned and looked down upon.

    I like the analogy of a dream and the dreamer. In a dream, it seems YOU are the one who creates it all for you. Whatever happens, good or bad, is entirely your "fault" or your "responsibility". Hell, you MAKE the dream and then experience it- and you behave in the dream often as if you didn't manufacture it yourself. On a different level, possibly the same sort of thing is going on in the "real world". The creator pretends that he/she/it didn't create it, because otherwise, where would be the fun????? :duh:

    Where does one cut the line between the dreamer and the dream? It is an arbitrary distinction, just as is the distinction between the physical and the spirit. Spirit is the "background" and "source" from which any "scene" takes form and appears (just as it does in an individual mind).

    As I currently see things, each of us are for now, at least for some period of time, some sort of "individuated spirit". Whether anything actually reincarnates - I really don't know. I suspect that some sort of "pattern" built on inner traits such as character, various interests and abilities, and "personality" continues for some while. These things ALSO "cycle". But, it is NOT "eternal" as itself. The "thetan" is NOT "eternal". There is NO THING that does not succumb to a cycle of action as anything ever created is on the way to extinction - including the entire Universe itself.

    I see it this way. Everything cycles - apparently "forever". Planets and solar systems and even galaxies and universes come and go just like do the seasons. The dreamer who dreams THAT dream splits itself up into MANY MANY MANY MNAY MANY "parts" and through consciousness can appreciate its dream from every perspective, from every angle, from every point in space and time (which are also transitory aspects of the never-ending cycling).

    In a sense what you experience as consciousness, as that "space inside your head", as "thought" is that part of God that appears in you. I am we and you are he and we are . . . . . . . we are all together.

    All is one. But, for now, the all is many. :confused2: :omg:
  7. uniquemand

    uniquemand Unbeliever

    The kids and I are now getting to the point where they call me "Dad" instead of "Kevin", and this nearly kills me every time I see it. The ex-wife does her own thing, but I believe she's still in with the Church (she lives in LA, and occasionally comes up on completion lists).

    As to the topic at hand, though, I think what you mentioned about the Nazarene's beliefs falls into the category of beliefs people identify with, as does a spiritual awakening of one kind or another. If I wake up, spiritually, as a member of some sects, sex with children becomes a non-issue: witness that wack-ass group that River Phoenix grew up in. BTW, my point is not that these bizarre beliefs are cool with me, but that the identification with the beliefs generates the considerations about right and wrong, good and evil.
  8. Mystic

    Mystic Crusader

    Ya. And eventually, thru time and evolutions, one steps beyond beliefs and into a world so real as to be yet unimaginable...until you get there.
  9. uniquemand

    uniquemand Unbeliever

    Yes, that's what you believe!
  10. RogerB

    RogerB Crusader

    Uni, I find it sad that you keep asserting in others that what they actually PERCEIVE is merely nothing more than some deluded belief.

    Mystic may play the game of being weird, bless his old heart, but he's paid his dues and done more work to find valid answers than I think you can imagine.

    He's the kind of guy you could learn much from . . . it's a pity you can't exercise the wit to ask him to explain and expound on what he has discovered . . . but then, I can well understand he's tired of trying to explain to the dullard class.

    I put a cartoon on another thread on ESMB that directly speaks to this kind of situation.


    Guess which of the two you present yourself as?

  11. Mystic

    Mystic Crusader

    "Belief" is too often based on assumptions from data, educated into a mind.

    Direct experience is another world.

  12. BardoThodol

    BardoThodol Silver Meritorious Patron

    For me, to use "that's what you believe" as a scathing indictment is odd. Odd beyond...belief.

    All of the wonder-filled experiences in my life were rooted in belief. Last Saturday, I watched KU fall behind by 19 points to their arch rival Missouri. I believed they would come back. To believe filled me with hope and energy. To believe filled me with electricity. I was alive with excitement! Eventually, KU pulled back, sent the game into overtime and won.

    I buy a lottery ticket and for a few days, I believe I will win. It fills me with the most wonderful sense of pleasure. I never win. But, now and then, I still go back to buy another ticket. You can't hope to win without a ticket.

    Sometimes you believe and win, sometimes you lose. But, there's so much pleasure in believing that the threat of losing become insignificant.

    Certainly, in a world of Science, "truth" is paramount. "Truth" is "God Supreme." Yet, at the end of the day, scientists have far more unanswered questions than answered ones. Scientists don't even know exactly what the pure energy is that forms atoms and sub-atomic particles. They aren't even sure what light is--despite basing so much "truth" on theories of light.

    Mostly the truths are offered within a "closed system" while fervently avoiding questions about what exists beyond that system. A common human frailty.

    How do scientists know? Via information filtered through a physical body. A physical body that has severe limitations regarding perception.

    To augment this lack, science uses machines. But the machines also lack the capacity to look any deeper than their own limitations.

    Machines. I look at this computer and ask it, "What do you believe?" It tells me nothing. It doesn't believe a thing. I ask it how much wonder it feels, how much joy. It feels nothing, has no sense of wonder.

    I watch movies, suspending my disbelief for a couple of hours, immersing myself in the story unfolding. Sometimes I laugh, sometimes tears flow, sometimes I jump in horror. All good fun.

    All based in the belief of that which I know to be a fiction.

    Science only knows a bit of the picture. Religion is only guessing. But, the joy felt by those who feel religion? Do scientists feel this? Usually only when they're exercising their "beliefs," their sense of wonder, their sense of "what if."

    Certainly, belief can be betrayed. The love of our life can go out and have an affair, or leave us, tearing out our hearts after we've believed with all our hearts in their love and faithfulness. Priests can turn out to be pederasts. "The only hope for all mankind" can turn out to be a conman, shattering our faith in our ability to believe.

    Should we surrender our ability to love when someone betrays us?

    One thing I'll take to the bank from all I've learned in life: given the choice, I will love rather than hate.

    And, I will give honor to my ability to believe and to wonder.

    "Facts" are often just superficial manifestations of belief. The chair I'm sitting in was created by someone's belief. By imagination. The house was created the same way, along with everything in the house, including this computer. The streets, the society, almost all you see were created by someone's belief coming into play.

    "It's only your belief!"

    My belief? How wonderful!

    What a compliment.
  13. BardoThodol

    BardoThodol Silver Meritorious Patron


    For the last few days, I've been pondering "mind" simply because you used it a couple of times.


    I have such glib definitions and conceptions of "mind." Such ready explanations.

    Yet, I only have clues. Where does mind begin and spirit end? Where is the universal mind that underlies all physical existence?

    We have a fabric which has been colored with dyes. The dyes seem to become part of the fabric. Fabric and dye become one.

    A "oneness" from which shirts and dresses and slacks can be fashioned.

    But, what is mind? Is it the dye or the fabric?

    Like our images created from consciousness. Like our dreams. If mind is created from the substance of consciousness, then is mind different from consciousness? Is mind merely the illusions created?

    Then is a body part of a greater mind? A body persists after the individual consciousness leaves, so a body can't be the result of a single human consciousness.

    If man is a spiritual being then what part of this "mind" is available to that spiritual being? Is that knowingness of an individual spirit limited to its own mind or does it have access to a greater mind? The mind of the oneness?

    Just idle thoughts.

    From and idle mind.
  14. uniquemand

    uniquemand Unbeliever

    I don't hold beliefs in contempt, but I do try to hold them all in doubt, so that I can review them and keep changing their relative values as I gain new information.

    To address Mystic's point, I agree that direct experience is another world, very different from our beliefs. However, what we are capable of experiencing is highly filtered by conditioning and beliefs (and expectations, another form of belief), so statements about one person's direct experience may be totally inapplicable to another person's (who is also in the same place) experience.

    It's a chicken-or-the-egg scenario. Can you have a direct experience without beliefs? Can such an experience be intelligible, communicable? Can you have beliefs without having had experiences?
  15. uniquemand

    uniquemand Unbeliever

    Roger, I actually appreciate Mystic more than you might give me credit for. Perhaps you don't see the voluminous exchanges we've had in chat. :) I value his contributions, but I don't worship him as a saint, nor would I think that would be valuable to either of us. He is more experienced than I am (unless you believe, as he professes to, that we have had lots of incarnations: then, how could anyone possibly know which of us is more experienced?), and I do listen.

    Perhaps I have over-stressed the idea that ALL beliefs are delusions (including my own), but I do think it is valid, certainly a good approach to have, offering a way out of constricted thinking.

    At any rate, he needs no defense from me, because I'm not actually attacking him. :) Nor are you needed as a referee.
  16. Gadfly

    Gadfly Crusader

    On Belief

    The entire question of belief and how it relates to reality is an interesting subject.

    I see it like this. At the highest level of creation (which none of us individually exist as) there is simply creation by fiat. Like you and your own personal imagination. You get an image in your head, you create it, and INSTANTLY it appears and you can "look at it". I sort of view ones personal "inner space" as an analogy or "lower harmonic" or "microcosm" of the larger space of "God" (whatever imagined it ALL into existence). In the sense of the creative imagination, you ARE "made in the image of God".

    So, at a high level, there really is no such thing as "belief", there is simply postulates and considerations, and whatever you decide to imagine appears instantly. Take a moment and notice how your own imagination functions. You call things up, or call up memories, or fantasize about various scenarios, and in all cases YOU PUT IT THERE and SEE IT exactly at the same moment as you create it. Creation and perception of the created occur simultaneously. This should be obvious to any person who takes a little time to experiment with and observe what his or her "mind" does. Actually, it isn't really "mind" per se, but spirit that does this. "Mind" is a creation of spirit.

    We can each see easily how any of our own unique "inner realms" respond to instant creation and perception. A problem with our own little versions of the absolute is that our creations don't "persist". We are endlessly changing and shifting what we create in our minds, our attention waxes and wanes, and nothing remains for very long. Now, while it is true that one can perform drills and exercises to vastly improve ones ability to create imaginatively, to focus attention, and to KEEP MENTAL IMAGES THERE INTACT, few of us bother with the discipline and time required for such an adventure. But until you do THAT, you will NEVER approach a personal understanding of how creation works by direct experience - you will simply accept and believe or not believe stories from others (NOT the same thing). When Mystic talks of DIRECT EXPERIENCE, while much experience and perception can be colored and tainted, there is a tight fine line where it can be other than that.

    But, one of the things you realize at that stage is that WHAT you see is colored and even determined by HOW you "see". In other words, there is NO REALITY that is separate from the consciousness that is seeing it (and creating it). Any observer ALWAYS effects and directly influences what is observed. This is the notion of Einstein's theories of relativity applied to consciousness. To be there and "see anything", you must contribute to the creation of whatever it is that you see and experience. These sort of experiences can be very unsettling because everything gets "thin" and even "vanishes". It often happens abruptly and quite shockingly to students of meditation.

    In the same way that you instantly see your creation or mockup in your inner space (mind), right along with you "putting it there", is the SAME way that it works "out here in the solid universe and world".

    So, the question becomes, if we are of the same stuff as that which created it all, why can't we each create similarly (by instant creation)? This is how I see it. First, you are but a TINY part of the whole of all-that-is. The awareness and consciousness that you possess is but a droplet of mist from the ocean of creative awareness from whence it came. Your awareness is as a spark from an immense universal fire. Your awareness and abilities in this regard are as a tentacle from the great central awareness that underlies all-that-is.

    There is no way to gain all the powers of that which created all-that-is while existing as a human being, or as ANY differentiated and separate aspect of creation. Yes, one can gain some few abilities and powers, but these will largely remain limited and relative to this plane of existence.

    See, it isn't so much that YOU expand and grow and develop into a God, but that instead, YOU lose personal identity, you lose personal concerns, you lose differentiation and allow separation to vanish, and in THAT WAY, yes you meld back into that from which you came. You can fade back into the central source, but in doing so you will LOSE all sense as an isolated and separate entity. It can be no other way. Though, yes, there are many gradations along that fading of separated self back into God.

    Now, as a human being, without the ability to NOW create instantly by "belief", I suspect that we each have an innate deeply subconscious sense that we are connected to something that DOES have such a capability. I have considered the notion that possibly people accept and adopt beliefs in an attempt to MAKE REALITY CONFORM INSTANTLY (as we know we "should" be able to do). See, on a very deep level, beliefs DO function as the postulates and considerations that form and create reality (the physical included). I am NOT talking about intellectual beliefs or concepts that flow through your conscious mind. The common beliefs of Man are "surface stuff". They are products of the intellect and mind, and are NOT of the creative imagination or spirit. Few of us have access to the subconscious realm of considerations and postulates that hold the entire universe in place.

    Anyway, what passes for "belief" on THIS plane is most often the product of an intellect or mind. It is a result of the action of a thinking mind that breaks up all reality into little categories, compartments, significances and meanings. It is "thinkingness". It does not have much of an ability to effect anything on that level. Sadly, most people accept and adopt beliefs based on personal bias, proclivity and with whatever happens to resonate with them.

    On a path towards "losing ones mind", in the good sense of learning to quiet the mind and ceasing to create it, one also abandons any and all belief. Any person who "believes" anything is still mired in some aspect of mind and thinkingness. With Buddhism, and other forms of inner work, it is a part of the progress to learn to abandon ALL vestiges of any sort of "mind". On these sort of paths "belief" is not a useful thing. But until one gets to a point where he or she can truly quiet the mind COMPLETELY, and have it vanish from view COMPLETELY (at least during the time period of doing the exercises), one will NOT be able to see and directly experience the glorious unfettered creative awareness that is each of our heritage.

    And until then, one will not be able to grasp, again from personal direct experience (as opposed to reading and listening to reports of others), the great difference between "belief" as a mental artifice of a human being and the "belief" of the creative imagination. The difference is tremendous. :yes:

    That is how it seems to be currently, at this moment, while I sit looking out the window watching the fog slowly meander up the forest valley behind my house. :biggrin:
  17. By Design

    By Design Patron

    No, unknown, and yes, at least as far as we can tell.

    Experiences get 'filtered' as inputs cascade upwards into higher processing layers in the brain. Generally, this is called the theory of 'theory ladeness' -- meaning perceptions are theory laden. Perceptual recognition seems intricately tied to conceptual understanding. The half-glimpsed shape and the small motions and sounds one perceives under the hedge get filtered by one's conceptual understanding of the sorts of things that are likely to produce such activity to produce a recognition of a field mouse burrowing around in the damp leaves.

    If this is true, the second question becomes difficult for intuition to really answer.

    Lastly, one can have 'beliefs' without having any experiences. If one accepts the evolutionary evidence, our brains were shaped thousands of years ago in the ancient environment of our ape-like ancestors, and come 'pre-wired' with certain input-output behavioral-pairings. For example, we seem to come pre-wired with the 'belief' that solid objects can not occupy the same place at the same time. We also come pre-wired with a drive to acquire a language, and the capacities necessary to generalize rules of whatever language one learns in the formative years. We also have certain 'moral' senses, as well as certain 'danger' senses (for instance, we are particularly sensitive to snakes and spiders). I'm happy to go into some of the empirical research which suggests these conclusions if anyone is interested.

    By the way, the fact that we come pre-wired with certain classes of behaviors is not to be construed as meaning that the brain isn't dynamically shaped by its environment.
  18. uniquemand

    uniquemand Unbeliever

    I'm very interested, actually. I love citations. I might be a little loopy, but I try to stay informed.
  19. Hatshepsut

    Hatshepsut Crusader

    I am enjoying this vibrant thread. While reading, it struck me that I had enjoyed bandying opinions on this topic before. I had the privilege of participating in our Sunday evening group sponsored by a freshly ex NOTS auditor who had departed from his independent group in Riverside. He had gathered us new exes in 1986 and was heading out to do the gnostic intensive.
    Gnostic Intensive
    What is Gnosis?

  20. Mystic

    Mystic Crusader

    Direct experience, yes. It does exist. And it's a gasser (old jazz hipster term).

    In the first moments when it happened with me back in the summer of 1991, I "knew" in that moment that I had just found that for which I had been looking for over 40 years--and the totality of all I had experienced in Scientology = Zero. In that moment I became my own philosopher, holy man, shaman, mystic, priest, guru, etc., and I was not alone.