Thursday, June 22, 2006

Kierkegaard and Wittgenstein

copithorne said... My questions, and your inability to answer them do signal that you are trying to use language in a strange way. It is good for you to acknowledge the strangeness of how you are speaking and try to work out how you are using language, try to develop a theory of it all. If you know Wittgenstein, you'd know that those theories will never withstand analysis.

The philosophy you present here falls in the tradition of neo-Platonism. Thoughts are real, substantial, vivid. They are in contact with a realm of ultimate forms. Life as it is actually lived is, in your word, "trivial" -- a pallid reflection. In the Christian faith, this was rejected as a Gnostic heresy. Neo-Platonism was bypassed in the Vedic tradition as well. There IS a special way in which religion uses language. That way is the language of faith. You hear it in a church or a temple. But you are not using the language of faith, are you?

You are hoping to translate the language of faith into metaphysics. Many people would like to do that because faith can be difficult. It can be hard to control. It might come and go, whereas philosophical thoughts can always be brought to mind. So, people substitute piety for faith because it feels more secure. But it's a dead end, it's confusing your own thoughts with the grace of God. That temple will only have to be destroyed. 11:38 AM

copithorne said... Intellectual substance of faith which is required to understand scripture? This is like the "requirement" of implicit metaphysics isn't it? You won't be able to make sense of these "requirements." You won't be able to put your finger on them. When you try to look for the operation of this requiring, you'll find you are just playing with words, doing your bebop scat routine, manipulating yourself. In a tradition of faith we might talk about the Holy Spirit here and we might be able to say something meaningful. 12:51 PM

copithorne said... Kierkegaard and others have demonstrated very well that the language of faith cannot be translated into the language of knowledge without falsifying the faith. This falsification will show up as theological errors. This will show up a philosophical errors. This will show up as impediments on the spiritual path. This will show up as violence.
When the philosophical function works in religion, it plays a deconstructive role. That would be like apophatic theism. It would be like the theology of St. Paul. Or it would be like prasangika madhyamika tradition in Buddhism in which philosophical analysis is used to demonstrate the emptiness of every thesis. The alternative to this is that you are making an idol out of your own thoughts. 3:25 PM

Monday, June 19, 2006

Dialectic meant atheism

In another footnote for lecture in 1935, in the same book of lectures on Hegel, Kojève agrees with those who consider Heidegger the consummate athiest.
But very few of [Hegel's] readers have understood that in the final analysis dialectic meant atheism. Since Hegel, atheism has never again risen to the metaphysical and ontological levels. In our times Heidegger is the first to undertake a complete atheistic philosophy. But he does not seem to have pushed it beyond the phenomenological anthropology developed in the first volume of Sein und Zeit (the only volume that has appeared). This anthropology (which is without a doubt remarkable and authentically philosophical) adds, fundamentally, nothing new to the anthropology of the Phenomenology (which, by the way, would probably never have been understood if Heidegger had not published his book): but atheism or ontological finitism are implicitly asserted in his book in a perfectly consequent fashion. This has not prevent certain readers, who are otherwise competent, from speaking of a Heideggerian theology and from finding a notion of an afterlife in his anthropology. P. 259 The Open Giorgio Agamben ¶ 5:29 PM enowning

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Bizarre Enlightenment

Thursday, October 27, 2005 ACIM Lesson 107 Truth will correct all errors in my mind. We do not ask for what we do not have. We merely ask for what belongs to us, that we may recognize it as our own. Sounds like Plato.
Truth will correct all errors in my mind, And I will rest in Him Who is my Self. Then let him lead you gently to the truth, which will envelop you and give you peace so deep and tranquil that you will return to the familiar world reluctantly. I've been there. That tranquility is what people get addicted to. You experience it once, and are forever trying to figure out how to experience it again. It's so hard to maintain in the world. There is a fine line between the spirit and spirits. If you use this tranquility to escape the world, then it is nothing more than a drug. ACIM goes on to say... And yet you will be glad to look again upon this world. For you will bring with you the promise of the changes which the truth that goes with you will carry to the world. It's not about escaping anything. It's about living more fully.
I had a kind of bizarre experience. The kind of experience that is starting to seem less and less bizarre all the time. I was sent an e-mail that I should read a post on the Authentic Self. I don't know what he read at my blog to send me this quote, or if he read any of it, because the blog it came from seems kind of like a spam blog. It's the Savitri Era Learning Forum . There's nothing particularly personal in it, just a bunch of quotes. They are all interesting, however. So perhaps it's a collection of ideas. There is some beautiful poetry at another site under the same Blogger ID. But it's not clear if it is his poetry or the poetry of others. Here is the content of the post he sent:
"Andrew Cohen: I wanted to speak about something we've discussed before, which is what I call the Authentic Self. In the development of my work in the field of evolutionary spirituality, I've come to the conclusion that awakening to this Authentic Self is a pivotal factor in the transformational process. And I think that a lot of people who are interested in enlightenment, including myself for a long time, have unintentionally been failing to make the important distinction between the Self Absolute, the Authentic Self, and the ego. As I have come to understand it, the Authentic Self is the deepest part of our humanity beyond ego, or the awakened spiritual conscience. The great twentieth-century sage Sri Aurobindo referred to it as the “psychic being,” and some might call it the soul. And this recognition was very helpful to me, because for a long time the traditional enlightenment model, which only seemed to describe the path from the ego to the Self Absolute, had not been meeting my own evolving understanding of what radical realization is all about when one is no longer merely trying to transcend the world but is simultaneously aspiring to transform it." Fabulous read.
What's weird is that I got on my stationary bicycle yesterday for the first time in more than a year. I have a bunch of old magazines sitting by it and picked up one that was still turned to the page where I left off last time I road my bike. It was What is Enlightenment, the May-July 2004 issue. And the article that I had left the magazine open to but had not yet read was Following the Grain of the Kosmos, dialogue V between Andrew Cohen and Ken Wilber. The quote that was sent to me was in the beginning of this article. Kind of weird, huh?
I bring it up because it speaks to this idea of escapism. You awake to the Authentic Self and become fully engaged in the world rather than thinking it is all an illusion so doesn't matter. I'll read more of the article when I get on my bicycle today. Anyway, I digress. Truth will correct all errors in my mind,And I will rest in Him Who is my Self. To be said 5 minutes at the beginning of every hour. Thursday, October 27, 2005 in ACIM Lessons 1-150 Comments (0)