The following exchange came from a throw-away comment on YouTube
, where I drew a parallel between "free will" and "free lunch"; the comment in particular that drew him out was "What is 'free-as-in-motion' about the Ten Commandments?"
I wrote him
a reply via private message, versus continuing to comment.
The reply followed with a flood - but I think I got his number somewhere in the middle. I am not afraid: this separates me from the meek and mild, toothless Buddhist.--
You commented "Control is why they all teach the ten commandments. Its the same reason they use all those rituals, they are all designed to control the masses. My view is one of someone who HAS read that crap, understand that the religions chose to use it for controlling the people through fear. Which is why they only teach the ten, not the two. Basically, the church is full of shit."
So - thanks for your affirmation, I think! You are admitting to some happy-clappy personal understanding, jes' you and your Bible then - as if that's a good thing?http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BzGgkhR1c6c
What happens to free will when you recognize the cosmic dictatorship? And what happens to the concept of the cosmic dictator with a couple of hundred years of reason and scientific investigation?
The two that "hang all the Law and the Prophets" are no better, wingsuitfreak. They are abhorrent to me (and I'm not alone in thinking that), and have a bunch of New Testament extra commandments, such as proscriptions against thought-crime, which is apparently worse than actually doing something "evil" or just plain "bad" - an entirely abhorrent teaching straight from Jesus' mouth, in order to guilt people.
Are you suggesting that all other religions, except yours - which I take to be "Cosmic Free Love" - are crap? There is no revealed "God" that is deserving of love and respect. And while I agree, it is possible to love others (with the Golden Rule) I do not see why religion or even faith is necessary for its application, at all.
I am not religious at all. I am merely stating what the bible states. Love God/Love thy neighbor in which the namesake of the religion states these are the two highest commandments of them all, none are higher. His teachings are all based around them as well. The ten commandments, being from the Old Testament, are not Christian law, but Judaic. The following of the two commandments will result in no violations (other than the idea of monotheism) of the ten commandments, but is more uplifting while the ten commandments are limited in scope and are mostly negative in nature.--
Thanks for the clarification, too - I'm merely pointing out that the Bible states a great deal more than what one "man" (viz. Jesus) stated, if he can be said to have stated it at all. So where's your justification for asserting the Ten Commandments do not reflect Christian reality? It is clearly not the case.
And I still assert, the two that you're holding up do not represent something that is uplifting, but inherently at odds with "freedom". I do not need to be commanded anything at all. That is true freedom.
Regards (once more!)
Oh yeah, religion is for man to control other men. Faith is an action. As in when you breathe, you have faith that there will be air for your next breath.--
Faith is a bad word, without the added "good" that modern thinkers tack onto it. You do not exercise faith when you breath, but are responding to a biological imperative and the universe (or, nature, or "the world") does not care if you expect another lungful of air, or not.
Faith is not an action, but non-action in and of itself, in a religious context. Faith is not-thinking, and doing what some external authority tells you.
"Good faith", by contrast, is acting with expectation that the other party will do as they say they will do. But it is no assurance that the other party *will
* actually do as they said they will do...
Christian reality doesn (sic.
) not exist in accordance to those teachings at all. They follow the ten commandments. They are pretty fucked up in my opinion."The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord.
And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: This is the first commandment.
And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these."
This is King James version. The first commandment does include monotheism (which wasn't really what the Pharisees had. They merely insisted they had the best god of the lot. And that he was theirs, by god! But the concept of loving God is radically different from the Old Testament view of fearing God. With the fear, one can control the population better. Still, it's your choice to choose. Free will there.
The second commandment is just the way it is. If you revert to the admonishment against judgement (sic.
), then it makes more sense. How you judge others tells more of the judger (sic.
), than the one being judged. This is merely a natural law placed as a commandment. How you love your neighbor, tells the world how you love yourself. There is some contradiction in that doctrine, but who knows if there ever was a Christ figure to start with? You certainly won't find proof of that in the four gospels. They all have different views of the whole thing. I look at the Bible as less a historical fact/word of god thing than I do a pretty amazing look at the result of developing morality and how to get rid of it to retain your natural state of grace.--
You said you're not religious, right? That looks a tiny bit contradictory, given the content of the above passage, cousin.
faith of a mustard seed.--
Reading the Bible a lot, expecting what, exactly? Blake *may not
* have been correct to assert there was some underlying grain of metaphysical truth contained within, and some universal "Poetic Genius" at work.http://www.poetseers.org/the_poetseers/blake/all_religions_are_one/
I also practice meditation from time to time, but I do not subscribe to a god nor a deity. Subsequently, I am as free as I care to make myself - and certainly not going to engage in a debate that has shifting metaphorical distinctions about what faith is. Faith is NOT a mustard seed - that's out of context. "Faith as small as a mustard seed" was said to be able to move a mountain. Do you see this mountain moving, or do the mountains generally stay where they are, in all their chaotic glory?
I don't think any of it is real in the sense that christians practise (sic.
). I actually find that religion to be the most horrifying of our entire existence. I read the bible a lot, but mostly when I was practicing my Buddhistic meditations. If anything, I would be a stoic. I am extremely curious and enjoy studying.--
Well, you are free to be as ignorant as you want. You are accusing me of being a follower of a religious order that I despise as being the most abhorrent in history. you can refuse to read the bible and be as guilty as the christians are in their willful ignorance. I led a very in=depth meditative practise (sic.
). Not sure what sort of impact dabbling in something like that will result in. Probably the same results as in anything else. Junk. Faith is that simple. What you are describing is belief that is unwarranted. Faith is just doing. There is metaphysical truth in the bible. There is also metaphysical truth in the Vedas, the Torah, the Meditations of Marcus Aurelious (sic.
), the Dao, the Koran. All paths have a metaphysical truth in them. Whether there is a god or not, no man knows. Personally, even if there is one, we are such a small speck of nothing on a speck of carbon that exists in a backwater galaxy which is only one of thousands of galaxies which form a single super galaxy, of which there are supposedly thousands of such super galaxies. I don't really think anything we do is that important. Even if there is a god, why would they care? Do you mourn the dead skin cells that expire on your body every day?--
You are also free to accuse me of ignorance, when I am the one who spent better than 20 years meditating on the Bible and it's contents. What does your quick judgment reveal? That you prefer a slave's lot to that of freedom, and instead choose to call your service "freedom" as if just calling it that will actually make it so?
Faith is not "just doing". To have, to take, or to hold to a faith is to *stop thinking
* at some level or another, and you're (sic. Aha! I made a grammatical error here!
) unwillingness to open your own eyes to it might be construed as just as ignorant.
There is no metaphysical truth in the Bible or any other text - there is only natural truth in metaphorical language, and the nature of Nature is one of Chaos. On this, we might learn to see eye to eye with one another. This is why I prefer Zen Buddhism as a source of philosophical revelation at present.
Chaos is Freedom. Chaos is Anarchy.
But you might have been led to believe that anything other than "Cosmic order" is somehow a bad thing? Nice and incoherent, that "somehow", don't you think?
[N.B. I'm wrong to assert anarchy and chaos are interchangeable. My quick-tempered bad...
This is becoming more interesting by the second. I could learn to listen to you, so that you didn't feel as ignored. But your "faithful persistence" (very Biblical, that) will not move this mountain. This mountain has eyes, a head, and the will to use his hands creatively - all while recognizing individual freedom. This Head also happens to share with the spirit of Mario Savio.
You should not be so judgmental, oh Buddhist.
Oh, none are so much a slave as those who think they are free. I believe (not sure) that was Voltaire. An atheist. All of us are slaves to our opinions, most of us are slaves to everyones' (sic.
"Buddhism destroys the discriminating mind." - The Hagakure.--
So you are all knowing? All knowledge is finite, therefore all ignorance is infinite. Samuel Johnson. In other words, you are ignorant. your denial of it only proves the point. Obviously, if you are looking for lies, you will find them. If you are looking for metaphysical truth, you will find it. If you read your Zen the way you read the christian bible, you would find no metaphysical truth whatsoever in it. Does that make it so? Chaos is the natural state of man. It does not mean violence. Only you can make it violent. And you can continue to believe that I am some christian person as long as you wish. And you will continue to prove yourself ignorant as long as you do so. I like the two commandments. I can follow them (excepting the one god thing, for I have no idea) without violating anyone's religious beliefs.And they also do nothing to violate one of the cardinal pledges of a Buddhist Monk (I believe it is in the Theravaden tradition) of doing no harm. Which is hard to do, and yet so easy as well.--
No, I am not all knowing. I'm a limited little human being who holds no pretense that he does not find useful.
But, I am well aware of the little that I can claim to know, and will not be bullied (again) by someone who thinks flowery metaphors make it all better. Thanks for your effort, though. Get back to destroying your discriminating mind, or learn to read my shorter responses.
And yes, I know Chaos is not necessarily destructive. Just so, I do not necessarily want to destroy anything. You shall not find a non-faith based suicide bomber in me, cousin. Chaos is not self-destructive, but self-organizing with simple principles. That's where I find my Zen... in fractal complexity. Rather than straddling a picket fence trying to please everyone, I find a way of building a bridge, instead. Is that not beautiful? It sure beats sitting on a picket fence.
I don't believe that you are a Christian, but you might as well be one so long as you defend Judeo-Christian nonsense as metaphysical truth. That, It Ain't.
I think it has a long ways to go before it destroys the discriminating aspects of yours.--
Aha!! Touché! I do discriminate, and make no apologies for being able to discriminate. It separates a monk from a ronin, perhaps. But I can choose to not discriminate, and often that is just what I do, in order to get by in this world.
But where is knowledge without discrimination? The Christians use a word - "discernment" - and mean the same thing by it. So, all I'm suggesting to you is, "piss or get off the pot
": either embrace that you can (and must) discriminate to be an effective person (and I think that's a safe bet) or, go whole hog and learn to stop discriminating, like a good Buddhist.
Honestly, this has been very useful to me. Thank you for caring!
Excuse me, for someone who has such limited knowledge and is aware of it, you seem sure of your freedom, that there is no metaphysical truth, that Buddhism is the pure path, and that I am one of those christian idiots. That's a lot of surety and vanity for someone as humble as you declare yourself to be.
I don't defend the Jedeo-Christian (sic.
) as nonsense. There is a reason why there is an annual meeting comprised of people from all around the world of all faiths. People who have gone beyond the dogmas of their religions and can communicate with each other without the bounds of their religious orders. It is because all of them are the same path in the end. To destroy one is to destroy all of them.--
To observe, without judgement (sic.
), that is the true mind. Oh, and I'm enjoying this as well.--
" To observe, without judgement, that is the true mind. Oh, and I'm enjoying this as well.
Notice that observing without judgment does not equal "not discriminating". One must learn to use the similarity/difference parts of the brain - but, one must not judge beforehand what one might see, for that influences our perception. Agreed?
Would you be interested in continuing it over a chat interface, then?
I really mean that - I'd prefer to be able to talk back and forth, and am perfectly capable of listening to the truth you wish to assert. Googletalk/Chat works well for me.
(Now, back to the earlier message...)
"To destroy one is to destroy all" is perfect nonsense.
You *are* defending Christian bullshit when you suggest the two commandments are better than the Ten, and not actually representative of the Faith. You happen to be defending a very narrow and scarcely held view, and you also happen to be affirming it for the poor "souls" who are bullied (sado-masochistically) by the religious organizations that you seem to profess to meet with - albeit, with the hope of ecumenism winning out.
So what if it means sharia law is defended, right? So what, that perfectly lovely people who never needed saving continue to believe it, because of your non-discrimination. You would have served them better by saying "This is nonsense" than "The Ten Commandments do not reflect Christian belief" when all the law and the prophets is exactly what Christian belief is based on.
Have you read Romans????
to discern is to make a judgement (sic.
) of what's in front of you. It is the basis of morality, the judging of good and bad. There was a story about the buddhist monk who was separating the rice in his begging bowl so that he only ate the good ones. He was chastised for it for this very reason. The discernment is to understand that what is in front of you is merely there in front of you. How you perceive it is the discernment. If you perceive it as good or bad, that judgement tells you where you need to concentrate (if that is the type of meditation you are practicing at the moment. However, I believe the true definition of meditation is a 24/7 thing that demands awareness of your attention of what's in front of you at all times. I fall a bit short on that one as well.) on your own self.
I actually don't like chat. I never have, but also when I chat on this computer, it freezes everything up until I collapse the chat window and then I can reply or use other parts of my net. I would fix it, but I enjoy a moment or two to let what I say sink in.--
Discernment means many things, to different people. Sometimes it is "the perception of that which is obscure".
Discrimination is more along the lines of what your parable said - and as I said to you (several times) if that is what you think is best, why don't you practice it instead of accusing me of ignorance. I observe, and then I classify what I have observed, all the while holding myself at bay from making hasty judgment. This is not an impossible task. Kant talked of being "indifferent".http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=discernment
There is a new thing called "Google Wave" that is a bit like emailing, and chatting, at the time time. If you would like an invite, I would gladly give you one.
I am actually saying the ten commandments are not being violated by the two. The ten commandments is as relevant to our cultural/spiritual growth as any other bronze age religion. If one reads the bible as a study guide for growth, it is easy to note the ten commandments are in Christianity to show how the continued following of morality leads to the self-destructive elements like Moses and his politics. I actually don't think the lesson to learn from the ten commandments has anything to do with god's law. It has to do with how we become worse the more moral we become. Moses really ate a lot of fruit from that tree of knowledge of good and evil! I haven't studied the Torah, other than the excerpts of the Old Testament, but the Jews that are developed in their path certainly seem to have a similar teaching. The ten commandments as practiced by christians is not correct to follow, though you will if you follow the two, it is meant as a tool to teach the dangers of morality.--
...and (w.r.t. the Ten and the Two) I'm repeatedly telling you, the commandments are antithetical to "Free Will". The "Free" is an elaborate deception in order to bully people, by banging them on the head with a Bible that does not make sense, and moral codes that are anything but.
Do you suggest cutting out the parts of the Bible that should be forgotten, for the useless bronze-aged conceptions that they are?
That's a bit convuluted (sic.
), but eventually about right. Haven't read romans in a while. I don't read the bible much anymore. Began it to have a foundation of knowledge to argue back with southern baptist preachers in the 1970s.--
Romans is one of the reasons we're better off without "faith" - a rambling text that ties together the basics of *actual
* christian belief much more concisely than any of the Gospels that you're relying on. Only the lowest common denominators use the Gospels. The preachers rely on Romans.
Mine wasn't a judgement (sic.
), it was an observation that you admitted. If you tell someone they are this, then I can usually say you think I am this. On the google wave thing, I just now switched to the ITunes on the web from CDs. In other words, I take a while to shift gears in technology. lol Saved me from the laser disc in the 70s! I'm also about to go eat some lunch and feed the farm animals (I try and live a simple life).--
I am merely saying that the ten are taken out of context to rob the people of the truth of the book. They shouldn't be forgotten, more like they should be understood for what they are. Most people won't ever desire to do so though, as the ten commandments and the entire Old Testament provides plenty of excuses for them to act out of hate, greed, and power. If taken alone, they can do great harm, but if taken as part of the whole, they are a necessary element of the whole book. It would be like Buddha becoming enlightened without Mara. We must have obstacles (always within ourselves) in order to realize our perfections.--
"I am merely saying that the ten are taken out of context to rob the people of the truth of the book."
Are they? The truth is, there was never a Ten until Christianity got its hands upon the book, and it was Christians who popularized the Decalogue. You're re-writing history, as well.
They are not necessary for anything, except societal control - and, some of them most obviously go without saying, to most societies who never heard of them.
Are you sure you wouldn't like a Google Wave invite? It's less confusing than running two separate threads, I promise - inside a browser window, communal, editable, and you can playback the conversation.
RE: Google Wavehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p6pgxLaDdQw
It is possible you'd find Wave useful for your own ends, too - it makes collaboration easier (in my humble estimation) and if you want invites, you're welcome to some of mine as well.
Does Buddha not having survived on merely one hemp seed for years make his story less true? Truth is not found in facts. All facts are merely opinions. Truth is best told as fiction. for the bible to be true, most of it would necessarily be false. As I've said, I have not read the Torah, so I am assuming it is Judeaic (sic.
). However, if they were taken out, the true lesson of the book would be lost. Is it used as a control mechanism? Of course it is. Whose fault is that? The people who are being controlled. They have access to the truth, but refuse to see it.
And though I'm sure you're right on the Google wave, I still prefer the internet.--
"Does Buddha not having survived on merely one hemp seed for years make his story less true? Truth is not found in facts.
Oh no? Truth is for those who Doubt, cousin, and not encapsulated by metaphor alone. Metaphors have no truth in them whatsoever, sometimes.
"All facts are merely opinions
Bullshit, sorry! Some facts are not opinions at all, such as, all is chaos. *Order
* is not a fact, and merely an opinion...
Google Wave is not a replacement for the internet; it is a replacement for email that has helpful inclusions. It is your loss, not mine; and rather than putting it like Jesus, I'll content myself with copy-n-pasting your replies with mine, however I see fit. The thing is, now you won't see how they fit.
But who needs eyes, right?
Even gravity is an opinion. Also, just because you perceive yourself as having jumped up and came down, does that make it so? Or did the world move down and up? Or is it all your imagination?
There is a story of these two russian writers. One wrote an academic work and felt he had done something worthy of praise from his fellow russian writer. Instead, he was chastised with something like "Real truth is only found in fiction." At one time, it was a fact that the sun rotated around the earth. That the stars were pinholes in the sky. The only thing I know for sure, is the more we learn, the more we discover how ignorant we are. Facts are merely the opinions of our industrialized age. Newtonian physics useful for industrialists and the like. Just as the facts of the shaman were useful for the health of the tribes in the olden days.
On the internet thing, I meant email.--
"Even gravity is an opinion.
Don't be a silly goose, wingsuitfreak. Gravity is a reality that we cannot subvert without expending significant energy. It is not even "wonderfully" consistent
, but instead, wonderfully chaotic, just as some of us expect.
" Also, just because you perceive yourself as having jumped up and came down, does that make it so? Or did the world move down and up? Or is it all your imagination?
Grade-A non-mysteries, as if they had no answer. Of course I jumped up and down - but relativity tells us that I have no reason to suspect anything is ever staying still, even if it looks like it is. What's your point again? Oh right, you think there's no good answer.
This is not all imagination: things are "real", and even though we perceive reality through two relatively tiny holes, the "reality" of the external world has to touch and change us, somewhat, in order for us to perceive it. If it were all imagination, this would not be the case.
Pointing to old false impressions of reality and expecting anyone to agree with your silliness is just plain foolish. You do not have to ruin a perfectly wonderful brain by filling it full of misconceptions; yea verily, that is what makes it silly.
"Facts are merely the opinions of our industrialized age. Newtonian physics useful for industrialists and the like. Just as the facts of the shaman were useful for the health of the tribes in the olden days.
Negative to the first; a "fact" is a well-understood thing. Some facts go way back, such as, humans need to eat to survive. The Word of any God is not enough. Newtonian physics was only ever a pipe dream, so why do you appeal to it? That is - we still use it for very limited kinds of problems, but it breaks down (and always broke down) as an explanation for everything. The Shaman *never
* had a fact, only a ritual. You do not know the difference between the two - the damage to your discriminating mind is quite evident, even to a novice thinker like myself.
A pity, fit for a god to choke on.