Where Are You … Spiritually?

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To many, this may seem to be a strange question. Let me explain. It was prompted by a recent blog post by Jim entitled Physics and Mysticism.

According to Jim, there is definitely a connection between the two and, as I interpret his remarks, he feels one “explains” the other. It’s all a bit deep, but it prompted the question I’ve asked in the title of this post.

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I’ve found that most people that read/visit my blog are non-believers. They may be out-and-out atheists, or they may be “borderline.” That is, they haven’t completely dismissed the idea of a Supreme Being, but they don’t feel the need for attending religious services or carrying out any other religious obligations.

There is also a sprinkling of visitors who tend to reject the idea of “religion” altogether and speak more from a “mystic” point of view. (I recognize the term, in itself, is rather “mystical,” but those who identify with it will know what I mean.)

I guess what I’m actually asking is … how do YOU see the world? Is it all cut and dried? That is … We live. We die. Life moves on. Nothing to see here, folks.

Or do you view life as being more than meets the eye? That is, do you see yourself more as a “transcendental” being?

>>>P.S. I would prefer that individuals who identify as “Christian” refrain from commenting on this post. I know –and most of my regular visitors know– exactly where you’re coming from so anything you offer in response would be superfluous (and may be deleted). Thanks for your cooperation. 😊

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Image by Nicolás Damián Visceglio from Pixabay

122 thoughts on “Where Are You … Spiritually?

    • Too many people have learned first-hand that foxholes create more atheists than delete them, but I leave that one for better minds than mine to debate.

      I stick with the simple observation that no ‘loving parent’ would sit back benignly smiling whilst his/her son scratched the daughters eyes out in a spat (or vice versa, change genders as desired). God: are you listening? Good … we knew you would be.

      But the saying has an appeal (for folks who have no experience and/or little imagination). It actually sounds right; you know, like ‘All cats are grey at night’.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. That is, they haven’t completely dismissed the idea of a Supreme Being
    I think most have declined on this wording. This is a problem right here. There is a huge difference between a deity, or “supreme being” that the normal atheist cannot believe. The Buddhist has no god in any form, neither does Taoism or Zen. The Hindu gods represent the vibrations and forms they create. It is not god in the western sense. Really it’s all you, because there is no way to separate yourself from it. That’s the illusion in Hebrew thought; That you are poor little me against the cosmos and nature, but when we transcend that belief we see it’s all one happening. Even your own body is covered by little tubes that connect you to what appears to be, outside you. But you are the organism environment. That is god.

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      • Well if I got off track it was to lay the groundwork. Hah.
        I don’t think any of these things are spiritual. That would imply spirits, gods, and hocus pocus. There are no tricks. It’s all right there for everyone to see but we’ve been taught not to.
        If there were a deity he has used illusion to prank his little gadgets. Very disingenuous for a benevolent “supreme being”.

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        • Ah, Jim, spirituality does not have to mean any of those things you just listed. In my mind none of those things exist, and I think of myself as a very deeply spiritual being. The difference, for me, is soul vs spirit. Soul is a religious word as I now undrrstand it, while spirit is what I know as the being I was before I created my ego. It is the best word currently available in the English language, so thus I choose to use it that way.

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  2. I’d love to believe that our ‘Soul’ departs to a better place when we die. That we have the opportunity to meet again with our loved ones. I’m less sure I’d like to believe that we have to come back and live through this shit again. I think I’m probably too cynical to think it’s anything other than Live, Die, Finito. But if I’m wrong I’m definitely coming back to haunt some of those who are making this place a living Hell.
    Massive Hugs

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    • The whole idea, as I see it David, is to come back to help create a better world here. Look around you, and you will see many beings at different points in their eternity-long journeys. There are those who see better outcomes, and those who are terrible afraid of better outcomes. In my life system, the more lives we live, the more we realize the world will not become better for all unless we work for that occasion. The more who work to create change, the sooner those changes will come. Be not afraid to live again. But be afraid that is this is all there is, the world of humanity will soon be over.

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        • As sure as I can be, but no one believes me anyway, so you’re probably best off not believing me either. The thing is, none of what we believe is going to affect what happens to us after we die, if anything. We can speculate all we want, or refuse to speculate at all, but that changes nothing. Doris Day sang it in one line in the 50s, Que Sera Sera. What will be will be.
          We spend amazing amounts of money and time trying to predict what happens, or doesn’t happen, after death. We debate the issues again and again and again. Yet everything we do is meaningless in the big picture of what is to come.
          But one thing I will say about boring. An eternity of sitting around on a cloud singing praises to some God who has heard it all before, now THAT IS BORING!
          My way is at least potentially exciting. A new life every century or millennium or so. (And I do have some experiences that lead me to believe what I believe, though I could be insane, I guess.)

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        • LOL. I’m not making the offer, and I doubt anyone gets to negotiate anything. I am merely mentioning what experience has shown me to be a very strong pissibilty. If I am wrong, sue me in my next life. To try to sue me in this life would not get you the court costs or pay your lawyer bills. As the old saying goes, you cannot get blood out of a stone-cold pauper. And if my body is the true me, it will be stone-cold after I die.
          Meanwhile, I am presently checking out your blog. Look for a comment soon.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Not much in it yet, but there will be. And you’ll be more than welcome~! (Wow, a whole reader all my very own … don’t stop me now, after you, the world) (SFX: insert maniacal cackle here—make it good!)

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      • The idea of living many times and coming back to improve things afresh is a lovely picture but not one I can see clearly because if it were so, given the number of deaths that have gone before us surely the world would be near perfect. Surely mankind would be near perfect too and concentrating on the world rather than bringing grief to one another. I have been laid out under anaesthetic a few times and though I experienced a white light I’m ready to believe it was just the very bright overhead light. I’ve heard a few people say it’s taken them onwards to a marvellous place but brought them back. Sadly I haven’t had this experience to increase or create a belief. So, I’ll have to carry on as I am but if time proves me wrong I’ll be happy to do my bit to make things better.
        Hugs

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        • The real problem is that after birth, humans, at least, grow egos, and from experience I can say my ego wanted no part of spirituality. So I gave mine a choice, work with my spirit being, or get off the bus. (When I talk about life I compare it to a bus. Ego is just the bus driver, necessary to guide the bus, but otherwise unimportant. It is the “people who ride the bus” that the bus exists for.) My ego opted to work with my spirit, not against it.
          As for the world being “near perfect,” I wish it were so, but we went far backwards before we ever realized we needed to go forwards. The result is, we are where we are. However, there is no need to stay here. Right now too many people are happy to remain stagnant because they are scared of change. As more people realize change is not to be feared, change will come. Right now, people like Trump are in the spotlight, people who want things to never change. But they cannot stop it. Nor can they stop their futures “selves” from changing too.

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  3. I find “spiritual” to be a mushy, badly-defined word. I’ve never heard a coherent definition of it that people could agree on, and so I have no use for the word.

    Are there things in our universe that we don’t understand yet? Certainly there are. Does that mean that I should believe just any assertion about those things that happens to sound good? Not for a minute. I reserve belief for where there’s enough evidence. I might enjoy speculating on other stuff, but if there’s no way to check your work, then it has to stay as just a speculation.

    Is there something to our lives beyond just this one physical existence? I think there probably isn’t. For example, what’s it like being under genera anesthesia? It isn’t like anything, it’s just nothing, a gap in my experience. If having my brain temporarily shut down by a drug can do that, why would I consider that having a brain that has shut down permanently should feel any differently? Also, l If I consider what it was like before I was born, I realize that it wasn’t like anything either. Sure, it would be cool if a mind were something more than what a brain is doing, but I think it isn’t very likely to be the case.

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    • Your remarks about being under general anesthesia hit home. The first time I experienced what you’re talking about is when I had gallbladder surgery about 7 years ago. After I “woke up” I thought to myself … this must be what death is like; i.e., Nothing.

      It actually helped me to accept what, undeniably, is yours, mine, and everyone’s final fate.

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      • My most recent anesthesia was also gallbladder, a couple of years ago. And they had to put me under for it twice. The first time I was only out for a few minutes, they couldn’t get the breathing tube set up, and they woke me up and sent me home. A month later they tried again, and the surgery went an hour longer than expected. But for both of those cases, when I woke up afterwards, I had no perception of how much time had elapsed. Identical nothingness both times.

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        • I have had many surgeries in my life, all of them under general anaesthesia. Amazingly, I never once considered it was like being dead, merely sleeping without dreams. I went to sleep, I woke up. Until I don’t wake up, it’s all just a part of life.
          As for death, I expect to wake up from that too. Not into a paradise, or anything like that. I go with my brand of reincarnation, as well as my brand of spirituality.

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        • To me, anesthesia wasn’t anything like being asleep. When I’m asleep, my sensory systems are still working, and I can be roused by a loud noise, or a bright light, or motion. Afterwards, I have a sense of time having passed, and whether it was a little or a lot of time. A deep sleep isn’t just a gap in my experience. Maybe you experience sleep differently.

          If after death, I wake up “elsewhere” that would be really great. Bonus! But I’m not expecting it to happen, and I’m not going to change the way I live my life because of that idea.

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        • No one is asking you to. That is the thing about life. You live the way you want.
          I may need to add something to my original statement though. When “I” wake up after death, it will not be me, rawgod, that wakes up, but the life force, or spirit,
          within me. rawgod, meaning the ego-being that calls itself “I,” will de dead, because it was never really alive.

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        • Your body WILL die, rawgod. Whether anything goes on after that event is unknown, albeit MANY have theories –and wishes and dreams– of ‘something more.’ Until someone “reports back,” it can only remain as an unknown.

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        • Exactly. But “I” am neither my body nor my ego. And that “I” has already reported back to me. I don’t expect you to believe it. My experience was very personal.

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      • And that’s still a vague definition, so not really helpful. I’m pretty sure that most people don’t mean “an uncomfortable introspective waiting room” when they call something “spiritual”.

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    • I’ve often said that “You are just as dead before you were born as you were after you die”. It confuses folks (me too). But anything to get ’em thinking, no? So—

      —so what is the blasted difference? But don’t ask me, I’m just a dog still figuring out how to get back the avatar image he’s used for years and is now being denied.

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  4. I’ve seen enough of the claims that the weirdness of modern physics, such as quantum mechanics, somehow legitimizes the worthless garbage of ancient religions and mysticism. It is wearisome, maddening rubbish, all of it.

    Given the mountains of gobbledygook to be found in sacred texts and mystical traditions, it’s not hard to find things that superficially resemble the discoveries of modern science. But that’s all it is, a superficial resemblance. No, ignorant half-savages in Arabia or India a hundred generations ago did not somehow anticipate wave-particle duality or the Heisenberg uncertainty principle. They couldn’t have, not remotely.

    My question for people who make claims like this is, where are the equations? Actual modern physics expresses its understanding of these newly-discovered phenomena via definition of the precise mathematical relationships among them. Without the math, there is no physics. To put mysticism and physics on the same level, or claim that one somehow anticipated or is legitimized by the other, is like looking at a toddler pushing a toy back and forth across the carpet and believing that this is somehow connected with an understanding of the internal combustion engine because the toy and a car both move linearly.

    Mysticism and eastern religions are not “deep”. They’re just as much shallow, worthless rubbish as Noah’s ark and the talking snake from Genesis. Western people think otherwise because mystical or eastern religious concepts are unfamiliar and exotic. But it’s all just as much of a trite scam as Christianity or Islam are. Even some atheists are prone to this stuff. I attribute it to residual vulnerability to nonsense left over from the religion they deconverted from, or to general ignorance and stupidity, or to a desire to believe that drivel they can easily understand (because it’s nebulous and imprecise and devoid of higher mathematics) is somehow on the same level with the frustratingly-complex achievements of physics.

    Modern physics is sui generis, unprecedented and unanticipated, a uniquely new way of understanding reality, and the only way we have ever had of genuinely understanding it instead of just making stuff up and pretending it was understanding. The pretense that mystical bullcrap has some connection with this is a profound insult to the true achievements of the mind.

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    • Your belief here is at odds with the greatest physicists of our time. Not only did they appreciate the comparison, but we’re forced by their own genius to accept what seemed improbable over the classical model.

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        • It easy to get on the train and rant about pure atheism , and assuming god as a deity makes it super easy to dismiss. There is more to it than that as many great physicists have found. It is a part of the natural world, but there are cultures that have been pretty keen on seeing beyond the surface.
          Are there fields invisible to the naked senses and instruments, or not? Hmm.
          When we look under magnification and describe what mystics have described for 1000’s of years, doesn’t that make you wonder, or are you no scientist at all?

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        • Infidel raised an excellent point about equations, meaning ACTUAL descriptions rather than vaporous words about vague connections. You classified this insight that highlights the massive difference as a ‘belief’.

          It’s not a ‘belief’. It’s a good insight into differentiating between the ‘mystical’ and physics and is the difference between knowledge produced from physics and the feel good kumbaya-ishness of claiming mysticism is equivalent insight, equivalent knowledge, when in fact it’s the only ‘belief’ in this false equivalency you are presenting. You dismiss his insight by claiming it’s a belief when it’s your own position that is truly the belief.

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        • I don’t have a position other than presenting what others have discovered. I believe him because it matches up with others from all different kinds of human experience. Btw, Fritjof Capra can do the equations and his experience (I’m sure you’ve read the book) was very close to the imaginations used in the calculations. This is how the images are produced in physics, with artist interpretations and filters. They don’t actually see these electrons and atoms.
          It is difficult for anyone to explain the experience because it does not fit into an intellectual box of science logic, which makes it A-logical, so the book also contains drawings of what he saw.
          It is equivalent insight to half the world. Science is great at making a few gadgets and manipulation of elements, but this is amazing I’m sure to see it in action. This is not isolated but worldwide through all known measures of human existence. Not sure what the problem is besides your pidgin-holed preconception of bootstrapped, cold hard facts that change daily.

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        • Jim, you categorized Infidel’s position as that of a belief. It’s not a belief. So I asked you WHY you did that… knowing from your own post that you consider belief to be the main impediment to accessing mystical spirituality. In other words, by describing Infidel’s point about equations – demonstrating the difference between mystical/spiritual insight that has none and insight from physics with useful and applicable knowledge (independent of whatever beliefs the user of such equations might otherwise have) – as BELIEF, I pointed out you automatically reject this point without considering its actual merit. That’s why I asked you why you did that… other than wave it away and feel perfectly justified doing so because of a bias and/or prejudice you have imported and then pasted on his comment as if this is what it was. My next point was that it was your own position that mirrored belief and not Infidel’s, so… by your own admission…. you are not able to appreciate or understand the insight produced through ‘mysticism’ or ‘spiritualism’.

          I did that to cause you cognitive dissonance. There’s something not correct in your thinking here. Can you figure out what it is?

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        • The problem with my thinking is you’re assuming a lot—as usual. I rejected it because it is an ongoing bias and one sided based on his repeated (over time) definitions of god in the monotheistic western sense of the term. This is an incomplete picture and inconsistent with the rest of the world in many, many cultures.
          As far as his belief in physics, I’m positive he knows none of the calculations himself, the same as you. It is a belief in the system of science as an ultimate authority on “things” that you rely others to explain for you. This is belief, and as you have demonstrated time and again it is beyond reproach as much as any religioso or political dogma.
          The insights to mysticism are useful to humanness and compassion. Physics provides that same cohesive element to humanness but you choose to hide behind a particular gamestyle that suites you. Everyone else is just stupid. When science changes it’s mind you will too.
          Mysticism is not a belief system. More like a method to deconstruct belief to obtain clarity.
          In my own experience three weeks alone, away from the chattter would change you more than you would ever believe.

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        • @tildeb—The biggest problem is; with all you claim to understand, you are still purely Newtonian in the way you understand and interpret the world. That ship has sailed although it is still the common M.O of most of the world, including infidel. It was a powerful mythology and it has stuck around long after the physics moved on.

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        • I can see how a very thin surface reading might make that claim of yours seem reasonable that Infidel’s confidence in reality requires belief. That’s ‘belief in the religious sense’, by the way. The problem, however, is that Infidel’s point about an independent reality that can be understood by equations is far deeper in meaning than the patina you grant to it. These equations formulate descriptive ideas using symbolic language that are not like religious beliefs; they describe fundamental relationships of physical and chemical interactions that – and here’s the first difference you fail to appreciate – are for everyone everywhere all the time. (This universal description using a common symbolic language of math is not the case for spirituality or mysticism.) Here’s the second difference you fail to appreciate: these descriptions, these equations, are then used in application to produce technology that works for everyone everywhere all the time. If – and here’s the third kicker versus this bizarre notion of ‘belief’ you impose on Infidel’s insight to negate its knowledge value and dismiss it out of hand – IF physics and chemistry were not the fundamental drivers of reality but some vague and nebulous airy fairy religious/spiritual/mystical belief imported by some people to ‘create’ various realities, these technologies based on applications of equations – remember, equations describe how reality operates and by what mechanisms in mathematical form – would not work the way they do. This fact is fatal to your imported assumptions that reality is unknowable because it seems to be impermanent, seems to ebb and flow, seems to be layer upon layer, seems to be turtles all the way down. And I use that term ‘seems’ because if reality really were this way, then the equations would similarly be in flux, the descriptions in flux, the applications in flux. This is not the case. Your phone still works. Aircraft still fly. that medication does affect biology in predictable ways.

          You empower the ‘seems’ all the time and think yourself justified by cherry picking quotations from scientists, as if they, too, ‘believe’ as you do. But they know better when it comes to their own work. They don’t leave space in their equations and insert ‘This is where something mystical happens’ or create a mathematical function and call it a description of ‘spiritual input’, do they?

          You always seem to either fail to understand or intentionally ignore that all measurement, all description, all equations, is comparative and not fixed. But the metric being used for comparisons doesn’t mean the reality described is too uncertain to know, its features too uncertain to be used as a basis for reliable technology given the set of conditions we share; it means that the results are fixed in relation to the comparison. That’s not a trivial understanding. But it’s far deeper than what you presume. By describing comparative measurements this way, I mean weight, for example, is stable even if different metrics of comparison are used. This rock has the same weight in a given environment regardless if you use imperial or metric systems of measuring how much force is needed to counteract gravitational forces on it. That rock has the same weight today as yesterday. That rock will weigh the same tomorrow. It’s properties are stable enough to use this understanding in practical ways.

          You presume something like radioactive decay makes any measurement useless because there is no permanence to the mass of that rock over all time. You presume permanence is necessary to know anything, and this is not the case. The way you are thinking about whether the weight of that rock can be known determines what you think about weight and justifies only in your own mind that therefore that rock is not ‘real’. This is a thinking mistake because there is enough permanence to cause effect in reality – especially when traveling towards your head – and should be treated as a fixture in reality when interacting with it. To claim it’s not real because it is not eternally permanent in properties, and therefore must be an extension of a person’s belief, is catastrophically stupid. You need to move your head out of the way and not presume you will it into and out of being real. You cannot believe in this conclusion that nothing is real because it lacks eternal permanence and long survive in this world, in this reality we just so happen share. And we know we share it because your phone – just like mine – works. The equations – the descriptions – work. And that is something neither mysticism nor spirituality can do: produce reliable and consistent understandings about reality because they have no means to comparatively measure anything. It’s all woo.

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        • You mashing a lot of goo into an off topic diatribe. Of course these gadgets work and we manipulate a few things but nobody really knows why they work. It’s not so concrete as you imply, and really we’re talking about where you are spiritually.
          The “laws” of physics, Wigner adds, have little or nothing to say about biology, and especially about consciousness, the most baffling of all biological phenomena. When we understand life and consciousness better, inconsistencies might arise between biology and physics. These conflicts, like the incompatibility of quantum mechanics and general relativity, might imply that physics is incomplete or wrong”. — Scientific American
          He continues—”Wigner, a prominent quantum theorist, notes that the equations embedded in Newton’s laws of motion, quantum mechanics and general relativity are extraordinarily, even unreasonably effective. Why do they work so well? No one knows, Wigner admits. But just because these models work, he emphasizes, does not mean they are “uniquely” true”.
          At some point everything you believe will be yanked out from under you but you will still cling to QM while living the life of a Newtonian.

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        • I don’t pretend to have anything more than a basic understanding of quantum mechanics and the accompanying theory but I don’t replace my honest, “I don’t know” with spiritual/mystical woo and pretend that’s a step up in knowledge as if belief in the woo grants me insight into reality when it so patently does not in any specifics and only highlights the most generalized connectedness of all things (which is to be expected inside a fixed system of physics and chemistry).

          Unlike you, Jim, I have great appreciation and admiration for those who have the intelligence, fortitude, and dedication to do the hard work of understanding and applying real physics and chemistry to advance our technologies and therapies (that you scoff are merely ‘gadgets’ when I think there’s a strong case to be made that they are the actually the basis of entire civilizations – cc Jared Diamond) and I hold a great deal of contempt for those who think they know better because of some special mystical and spiritual insight they think they’ve discovered that produces… well, absolutely nothing equivalent in either insight or applied knowledge. That’s a clue many people seem to miss. Oh, sure, there will be vague references to mystical dreams and spiritual imagery that leans towards actual discoveries, just like we hear from religious scientists about their religious beliefs ‘contributing’ to their science but never appearing IN the actual science! That’s a clue. In mathematical terms, spiritualism and mysticism are members of a null knowledge set. That’s what is meant by not producing equations.

          Your use of quotations from scientists is a mirror image of the same tactic used by religious people, as if these scientists themselves lend credence to the woo that underpins spirituality and mysticism. And, in the same way, note that the ‘how’ questions real scientists deal with in the real world (and that produces real world knowledge that is true for everyone everywhere all the time and then applied many different ways across all kinds of fields in the real world because they work for everyone everywhere all the time) are ignored by these belief-addled proponents while the ‘why’ questions are advanced in their stead. That’s how religious belief is promoted, too. Hm. The clues, they just keep a-coming.

          The ‘why’ questions allow room for woo (surprising no one ever) and this is where we find such conversations taking place rather than all admitting such ‘why’ questions have only one honest answer: “I don’t know.” That’s why belief of the religious kind is necessary to fill in the gap. (Gosh, it’s so common in religious apologetics that it has a widely recognized name: god of the gaps. But the same space, the same gap in knowledge, is used in exactly the same way for all mysticism and spiritualism claims.) This is another clue about the knowledge value, the applicable insight, from the proposed answers to the ‘why’ questions… as in, none. These clues are piling up.

          But I do know the ‘how’ questions reveal spiritualism and mysticism to be hollow shells, facsimiles of knowledge trying to masquerade as if wise (because people will buy ‘wise’ when they don’t really understand what the hell someone’s talking about), as if this insightful wisdom is ‘another’ way of knowing (but producing nothing knowable) – another clue – while offering those who think these hidden and mysterious ‘realms’ offer real insights find comfort in the dark closet of ignorance and superstitious nonsense on which spiritualism and mysticism continue to feed. But they feel wise, so all these clues don’t really matter. Reality magically becomes whatever you want it to be and you become the source of everything. Just like God supposedly whispering in the True Believer’s ear and insisting any and all contrary knowledge comes from fools!

          See how this con game works?

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        • ”Unlike you, Jim, I have great appreciation and admiration for those who have the intelligence, fortitude, and dedication to do the hard work of understanding”. You think I don’t appreciate ones ability to focus on a particular line of thought deep beyond the accepted norms? Nonsense! I certainly appreciate them. It’s rather amazing, but it is just one line of thought, thats why relativity and and QM will never intersect, like spokes radiating from a wheel. But I also appreciate others that have had that ability. Do you appreciate Siddhartha Gautama’s ability to reason beyond your capability over a long period of time, or Lau Tzu, or even Alan Watts? Spokes on the wheel and the radial circumference makes the whole of human culture full of varied talents, music, art, philosophy, and beauty. And, there are also opinionated end users who typically assume the worst in people right out of the gate. Like you and Ark.

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        • tildeb, you’re getting awfully close to “personal attack mode” — which I’ve cautioned you about before. Please don’t make me censor you.

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        • Jim has accused me of being equivalent to a ‘Newtonian’ in my understanding of physics and so my commentary equally out of touch with modern physics. This is a slur, Nan. He knows better. So I have responded with equivalency but, once again am the one being singled out here by you. This is a pattern. I had not read this admonishment before my last comment so, rest easy, I will now stay out of it.

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        • You get “singled out” because you’re like a dog with a bone. I long ago have accepted that you are very strong-minded about the things you believe and/or know. However, my blog isn’t a classroom. It’s merely a place to share thoughts, ideas, experiences, and yes, opinions.

          Having said that, it has always been my hope that people can –and will– do all this as if they were face-to-face and having a congenial conversation. ‘Nuf said?

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        • Not Newtonian in your “understanding” of physics. Newtonian, mechanistic, in the way you live and apply your brain and see the universe. It’s not an insult. Nearly everyone still operates, pictures, verbalizes, and believes under that mythology.
          It is like an ecologist who knows (even intellectually) that it is all one interdependent and complex ecosystem, goes home at the end of the day and lives like they are separate of it. It isn’t true.
          And boo boo if you feel I picked on you with nasty science insults. This is how you react after bullying multiple people for days on end? Run tell the principal?

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        • Actually, it appears my comment appears below this one, even though I wrote it first, in direct comment to the first comment in the thread. How can that be? Seems to be a distortion of reality here. I’m sure you will enjoy explaining it to me in numbers and equations.

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        • And Jim, maybe that is just how the brain works. It is the brain that works in mysterious ways. Ah, the beauty of imagination and the excitement of figuring things out. Cheers. Hope all is well. GROG

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      • When you are delving into the mystical, you are leaving the world of reality. Everything reported from that area is the imaginings of a human. There is no evidence to argue otherwise.

        “I doubt, therefore I think, therefore I am”
        Cogito, ergo sum

        I know you recognize that. Scrutiny is good. Thinking long and hard on problems before you actually begin to work on them is good. I think that is what Einstein did. I don’t think he just walked up to a chalkboard and started writing out equations. There is nothing magic nor mystic about what he accomplished. He spent a long time thinking his way through the problems. The results of his thinking have been a huge part of what we now call quantum physics.

        The kind of thinking that would make a connection between mysticism and physics can never succeed. Those streams cannot merge. Not in the real world.

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        • Dear cagjr,

          Thank you for your thoughtful comment. I would just like to point out that there is a glaring error in your following statement:

          I think that is what Einstein did. I don’t think he just walked up to a chalkboard and started writing out equations. There is nothing magic nor mystic about what he accomplished. He spent a long time thinking his way through the problems. The results of his thinking have been a huge part of what we now call quantum physics.

          The results of Einstein’s thinking is not quantum physics but the theory of relativity, which encompasses special relativity and general relativity, proposed and published by Einstein in 1905 and 1915 respectively.

          Regardless, I agree with the general tenet of your comment to which I am replying here.

          May you have a lovely weekend!

          Yours sincerely,
          SoundEagle

          Like

      • @ Jim

        Mysticism is not a belief system. More like a method to deconstruct belief to obtain clarity.

        mysticism
        /ˈmɪstɪsɪz(ə)m/
        Learn to pronounce
        noun
        1.
        belief that union with or absorption into the Deity or the absolute, or the spiritual apprehension of knowledge inaccessible to the intellect, may be attained through contemplation and self-surrender.
        “St Theresa’s writings were part of the tradition of Christian mysticism”
        2.
        vague or ill-defined religious or spiritual belief, especially as associated with a belief in the occult.
        “there is a hint of New Age mysticism in the show’s title”

        In other words ….. woo?

        Liked by 1 person

        • I’ll be sure and get your approval before posting. I’m happy to see you can google.
          Do you find it odd at all that of all the comments on this blog, you alone repeatedly need clarification over and over again?
          Can you define what you know exists? Anything? Please define consciousness for me. You can use wiki or the dic to help. It should be very easy and give us a common area to begin

          Like

        • Consciousness: Awareness. How does that suit you?( no Google required.

          Do you find it odd at all that of all the comments on this blog, you alone repeatedly need clarification over and over again?

          No, not at all. I simply prefer to deal in terms that are not smothered in obfuscation ( read: Bullshit)

          Can you define what you know exists?

          Sure. But please, first define the term ”exists”.

          Like

        • I don’t know. Formal attempts to precisely define life/existence date to at least the time of ancient Greek philosophers. Still up for debate.

          Like

        • Do you think your level of awareness is the same as everyone else’s?
          You have no idea? A bit evasive and disingenuous there Ark. Of course you’ve failed to answer many questions over the years, and actually by your comments and interactions over those years indicate you must believe your intuition is much higher than everyone that doesn’t think like you. Hence your wickedly smart, above-grade atheism. Like infidel says, they’re all ignorant or stupid. Are they?
          I think most people are doing the best they can with the tools they have.

          Like

        • Evasive?
          Well, let’s see.
          Google once again, I’m afraid.
          knowledge or perception of a situation or fact.

          I know that Mak is more aware of politics than I am as is John Z.
          I will add this is by choice on my part.
          I am probably a lot more aware of what is happening in English Football than you ( but I stand to be corrected, of course)

          Someone who has suffered a sever brain injury – Michael Schumacher for example – is probably not aware of an awful lot, and certainly he would not be aware as he was when a Formula 1 driver.

          Does that satisfy?

          Like

      • What an idiotic question. I was born in 1960 and I understand World War II, which happened before I came into existence. Whether something happened before or after an intelligence existed has no bearing on whether or not that intelligence can understand it.

        This is the kind of nonsense that happens when brains get scrambled by spirituality.

        Liked by 5 people

        • Infidel! those are facts. mind can understand facts.
          mind cannot comprehend reality, which can never be broken down to pieces: to facts, numbers, data, or any scientific observations.

          Liked by 1 person

        • mind cannot comprehend reality

          Jesus fucking Christ, how is this level of stupidity even possible????

          Facts, numbers, data, and scientific observations are exactly what reality consists of.

          Liked by 4 people

      • Created? This implies a creator, an agency. We have a perfectly good explanation that doesn’t require agency. It’s called evolution, self-organizing physics and chemistry of material that produces biology. Unguided, naturally occurring (inevitable, actually), what is demonstrably local units obeying local rules of that physics and chemistry interacting with stable forces and fields that are also produced by what we define as physics and chemistry. What I don’t get is why this awesome insight is insufficient for you.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Of course it did… that’s exactly how evolution works. So what is it about increasing complexity – the emergence of consciousness from biology – that causes you to reject it as if this is a ridiculous notion?

          Liked by 4 people

        • Show me the evidence that consciousness evolves from matter! and then explain to me who/what was there to speak about a time when consciousness did not exist or a space in which consciousness was not present??

          haha! tildeb, you’re too funny.

          Liked by 2 people

    • To Infidel 753 I say, the language of equations was not around 5000 or so years ago. They used Sanskrit, at least the ones in the East and Middle East. Can you understand what they were saying back then? No! Unless you are intimate with the Sanskrit of the time, all you have is translation. I defy you to prove what they were saying then was not equivalent to the language of equations as we know them now. Times have changed. Languages have changed. The little Sanskrit I do have would not accomplish conversation in the times of which you are abusing. Your English right now would not be understood by an Englishman alive 500 years ago, let alone 5000. Your argument is null and void.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m not into the kind of ideas that jim- mentions in his post. I’m very much on the science side of the house. However, I’ll grant that science is very mechanistic and tends to ignore much of what is important to us.

    Liked by 5 people

  6. Dear All,

    Where is SoundEagle … Spiritually?

    Live a good life.

    If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by.

    If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them.

    If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.

    Yours sincerely,
    SoundEagle

    Liked by 10 people

  7. Hello Nan. I have in my past tried to be religious, did not take for me. I have tried to think of the world of the supernatural of all shapes as possible, I sure would love to be able to use the force or see the good, bad, or spooky. Spouse tried to get me into Wicca, but I simply couldn’t do it. I need more fact, more evidence that something is real, surely more than feelings and the idea of seeing shadows. Fake it until you make it. So I am of the mind that science doesn’t show any evidence of the supernatural, and also that as of now we don’t know how to measure or test the supernatural. For me if you cannot show it, test it, replicate it, or produce it at will it doesn’t exist. If your god cannot be affected by reality, that god cannot affect reality. However if you want to use spirituality as a personal guideline of beneficial behavior in society / community I have no problem with others doing so. As long as it is for them personally and not forced on others.

    All the above said I think people here are adult enough to understand that if you are in a long term relationship with someone who has belief in and relates life to the supernatural it is more than diplomatic to accommodate that feeling / belief to keep harmony. I will just say I hate the smell of burning sage. 😀😃🙄😋 Hugs

    Liked by 8 people

  8. Nan, about 10yrs ago, while walking to work, this came to me:

    “This is your dream.
    It is only a dream. What you think is real, the world, your body, the people around, are all part of your dream.
    What you really are, is pure consciousness. Everything that happens to you, comes out of that consciousness. It is what you have ever thought of, yearned for, desired, consciously and sub-consciously. It is all passing, like waves on top of a sea.
    The consciousness behind the dream is the only thing that is real and eternal. It is the seed of all there is.
    Which one (real or unreal) do you focus on?”

    Later on a friend confirmed, our day-to day life is made of the same stuff that our dreams at night are made of. Our life… a longer dream. Who else but I is the creator, enjoyer and destroyer of my dreams??

    Liked by 1 person

    • No it isn’t. If you jump off a tall building in a dream, nothing will happen in reality. You’ll wake up, forget the dream after a few minutes, and everything will go on as before. If you jump off a tall building in reality, you’ll die. Reality is not a dream. The physical world is real and exists independently of your mind or what you believe about it.

      Consciousness is generated by the physical brain, which is made of matter. Consciousness is secondary to matter and cannot exist independently of it, any more than a computer program can exist independently of the computer it is running on. “Pure consciousness” is an impossibility.

      Liked by 8 people

        • To repeat: If you jump off a tall building in a dream, nothing will happen in reality. You’ll wake up, forget the dream after a few minutes, and everything will go on as before. If you jump off a tall building in reality, you’ll die. Reality is not a dream. The physical world is real and exists independently of your mind or what you believe about it.

          What you said about reality being a dream was objectively wrong. That’s the point.

          Liked by 5 people

        • I would prefer you to jump off the tall building, then you can tell be there is no such thing as pure consciousness. Speak for yourself, but you cannot speak foe me, or Monicat, or Jim, or even tildeb. No one expects you to believe in pure consciousness because you think we say you should, I at least undrrstand pure consciousness because I experienced it.

          Liked by 2 people

        • “the world exists independently of your mind”. how else, except through the five senses, have you ever known the world?? and since through the senses the mind alone perceives the world… is the world other than the mind??

          ponder on that

          Liked by 1 person

  9. My take is that the universe is 100% natural. The supernatural realm of heaven is the creation of the human imagination. Humans are not special. Life is what a person makes of it, and how it all turns out is just a matter of luck. Some luck is good and some not so good. Humans are pleasure seekers, and the greatest joy is realizing that you are important to another person in this life. This life is the only one we will ever have, by the way. Cheers! GROG

    Liked by 10 people

    • Hey, grog, is that “grok” mispelled, or does your wisdom come from the bottle containing your grog. Please, no insult intended, that was supposed to be punny.
      Anyway, just wanted to say my spirituality has absolutely nothing to do with heaven, paradise, or even nirvana. Spirit is life, nothing more, nothing less. Life never ends. Only individuals do.

      Liked by 2 people

      • How can you possibly know that life never ends? Life may be pervasive throughout the universe, but it would be unwise to assume that life on other planets evolves the same way as on earth. One good thing about spiritualists, they don’t go around knocking on doors. Cheers. GROG

        Liked by 3 people

        • We don’t yet know that life is pervasive throughout the universe, though to think that is the logical assumption. However, it is that very “pervasive life” which I am talking about when I say life never dies. Our egos give us to believe we are all individual lives, but that, I think, is the fallacy here. In my understanding, there is only one life in the universe, one that has no ego or individuality. Essentially it “is” the universe. We physical beings are just representations of that life.
          As for door-knocking, ’twas you who knocked on my door, and I answered your knock.

          Liked by 2 people

      • rawgod, I didn’t know grok, but it’s GROG a simple acronym for my aspiration for “getting rid of god”. I do imbibe a bit, but mostly Japanese beer. I feel the same “spirit that you do. It’s a human thing, I think. It’s nice to think of a commonly held spirit for humanity, but I think that’s a bit of wishful thinking. Love is good, so is respect. Cheers and all the best. GROG

        Liked by 2 people

        • Grok –from Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A. HEINLEIN. I guess you were past the age of science fiction in the 60s, lol.
          It means to understand completely so that whatever you are grokking is like an intimate part of you.
          Don’t know why I made the connection, but I grok you can grok too.

          Liked by 1 person

  10. May I comment and interact as someone who is, while definitely Christian by some definitions of the word, also rather pagan and mystical in a lot of ways? This is a topic which fascinates me greatly! And, if I may … I’m definitely not coming from exactly the same place as the majority of Christian opinions about Heaven, Hell, and Purgatory!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Raina, I think it is all mind games.We like magic and we like talking to ourselves. We love the mysterious and the fantastical.
      Every believer in heaven has a personal version of the supernatural. Imagining that a garden fairy really exists is delusional, don’t you think? Cheers. GROG

      Liked by 3 people

  11. Omphaloskepsis

    “I do not fear death. I had been dead for billions and billions of years before I was born, and had not suffered the slightest inconvenience from it.”
    Mark Twain

    I noticed something mystical about physics, I think this was sometime during my first childhood:

    A ball of matter, maybe the size of a pea, or maybe a marble, exploded and caused the universe to come into being.

    Where did the matter come from that went Big Bang, I ask?
    Well, it was always there.

    The same feeble answer we get from the deist when we ask the same question about their god. I wonder what he/she /it was doing 13.8 (or so) billion years prior to his pulling the universe out of his/her/its dark mind.

    Do I understand their physics? Hell no. But I respect everyone who has the intelligence to be involved in the discoveries that are being made. I trust the science and the math behind it. It quit being theory when they were able to predict things before they were actually discovered or observed. I’m trying to live long enough to see the James Webb telescope in operation. As of today, that launch is set for my wedding anniversary, Dec. 18, 2021. Damn! I’ve been married all my life! Don’t tell my wife I said that.

    What if the JWST leads us to find life out there? No. We are not alone.
    If it is more advanced than us, it will no doubt be declared god. Anything less and we will enslave it or call it ‘other.’ If it is at all intelligent it will never allow contact with us.

    Here is where I am, Nan. This is it. There is no hereafter. That doesn’t mean I don’t want to be a better person each day. If I don’t get to see the JWST in operation in this life, too bad. Mixing mysticism with physics? I don’t know where Jim is going with this. I know that when I read his post, I thought hell no, we are not going to mix mysticism with psychics.

    Religion is mysticism. Trying to give substance to something that does not exist. Five years ago, I wouldn’t have paid much attention to the idea. But now we see that the Christian religion is the driving force behind Trump and 01/06 and that Trump is the man who would be the dictator. We recall the history of the church and despots, and the record is pretty dark. The fact that I think death is the end of my trip does not mean that I don’t give a damn about our future, and for that matter, the future of mankind.

    There is a sample of my spirit. It only began when I became able to do things with some awareness; sometime long after my birth. I started storing all the experiences in those places in the brain, which exist but have no physical dimension. It developed over these eighty + years, with lots of revisions, twists, and turns. It continues to grow. There is no way to recoup or justify the years I wasted pursuing non-existing mystical figures.

    We get a varied number of trips around the sun, but they are limited to one lifetime, so let’s make the very best of it that we can. Let’s try to leave our children’s children’s children a democratic republic. A way of life in which they have control of their own destiny, free of authoritarian government and religion.

    The Messiah is not coming back — he’s not even going to call.

    Smoke some good cannabis, drink some good bourbon, and love some good lovers. If there was a god, it would approve.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Dear cagjr,

      I commend you for the noble sentiments that you have shown us when you mention your three goals of treasuring what remaining years you (or anyone) have in their lifetime; of “get[ting] to see the JWST in operation in this life”, and of “leav[ing] our children’s children’s children a democratic republic”! The first two are achievable; whereas the third one is far from certain.

      We can agree that the ongoing chaos inflicted by the Trump presidency finally culminated in the infamous riot at the Capitol. You and I can be justified for being cynical, snide, snarky and facetious in characterizing Trump as the symbolic messiah who is going to lead his misguided supporters to glory on Earth and the promised land! It is often futile to reason with such misguided folks. Perhaps only when the country truly becomes autocratic or fascist will they wake up, but then it will be too late.

      Needless to say, due to misinformation and disinformation, 2020 had been a difficult year, not to mention having to deal with the pandemic. It was all quite surreal, perhaps in some ways more bizarre than ghosts and the paranormal (not that I believe in such things). One could say that we live in interesting times indeed, but often for the wrong reasons. I have had to coin a new term: Viral Falsity.

      It is going to be a very tall order for the Biden presidency (or any presidency for that matter) to turn things around. It would have been much easier if some Republican senators had been far more honest and incorruptible, for they have been very greedy, uninspired, cowardly and lack criminal, moral and political accountabilities. It is all quite a big mess in danger of getting bigger still.

      2021 is more than 75% gone and the GOP is still on trial and has fared no better and seems to be getting (much) worse. Neither physics nor mysticism will be of much help in these regards at all.

      I have attempted to sum up and reflect deeply the state of affairs in my extensive and analytical post entitled “💬 Misquotation Pandemic and Disinformation Polemic: 🧠 Mind Pollution by Viral Falsity 🦠“, particularly in the last section named “Denouement: Democracy, Education, Legislation & Sustainability“.

      The age of Anthropocene could indeed be a very short one.

      Yours sincerely,
      SoundEagle

      Liked by 1 person

    • Have to disagree with your belief in democracy, republic or otherwise. As Trump demonstrated, democracy just allows anyone to be King, for whatever the going term between elections is.
      No, you want your childrens’ childrens’ children to have a better living situation, teach them how to be responsible all by themselves, then remove government as we know it completely. Democracy has proven to be a failure, in my eyes.
      Meanwhile, here’s to you living to not only see the JWST in action, but to get to hear whatever it has to tell us. I think we will all be surprised.

      Liked by 2 people

  12. Ah, at last I get to comment directly to you, Nan. Nothing new to tell, I still believe in my version of spirituality, and you know why. Is it transenndent? Depends on how you look at it. I myself do not use the term. But all life, not just human life, connects to all life, meaning there is only one life at the bottom of the barrel. And that is how my barrel rolls.
    Good discussion, but a bit myopic at times — in my opinion.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. My father had a BA in physics & a MA in engineering. He was also a devout Roman Catholic. He saw physics as the ultimate voice of God & spoke all the time about this. He was quite mystical, unlike my sister, who is dogmatic & rigid. I have read a lot of articles & books that reflect this same philosophy.

    My father’s father was not Catholic. (Neither of my grandfathers were Catholic, only my grandmothers). My Poppy & I were very close. Poppy was a great gardener; he spent most of the morning outdoors, unless it was bad weather, then you would find him at his desk, taking care of the household accounts (he had been an accountant for Socony-Mobil & retired at age 55, a millionaire). He taught me how to do basic banking & how to balance a checkbook before I was 10.

    Anyway, I once asked him why he never went to church. We were out in the the garden at the time.

    He said that he didn’t need to go to ANY church to commune with ANY god. That when he was out in nature, that was where he found god.

    This was probably the most influential religious statement in my entire life. I think I was around 9 or 10 at the time when we had this conversation. Soon after this, I read the Diary of Anne Frank & all kinds of Catholic learning started falling by the wayside … the “one true religion” BS & “only Catholics/Christians” go to heaven crapola.

    I got into Wicca/Paganism when I was in my 20s & that really resonated with me … of course, it wasn’t a far jump after being raised Catholic. I had always been devoted to the Holy Mother.

    I don’t believe in very much. I don’t want to believe. I want to KNOW. I am probably closer to the mysticism of my father & my Poppy … there’s something about the arch of the sky, the smell of the earth, the pushing of the new sprouts in the spring, the taste of an apple right off the tree … that’s DIVINITY.

    & sex. Really good good sex … ecstatic, loving sex … that’s knowing divinity.

    Liked by 4 people

  14. I like Sam Harris’s book, Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion. I need to read it again.

    For me, it’s like you asked about two things. God belief or spirituality, and world view. While the first certainly effects the second, they are different. I suppose my world view may also influence my spirituality.

    To answer, I must rely on my ability to perceive the real physical world. I know there are thoughts and emotions flying around that I cannot sense. I can only perceive related actions. In a post I published today, I wrote about peeps assuming anger when I asked a question related to god or religion. Why? What did I say or do to make them assume my emotion? At other times, I’m told “no reason to get angry.” Good. Because I’m not.

    I’ve been around a long time. Spiritually, I’ve been there and done that. I accept possibilities, but I am also a convinced atheist. I doubt any kind of life or consciousness after death, but I do wonder about the human spirit. I’m not opposed to woo-woo, but I am to bull shit. The difference is subjective.

    I consider myself a champion of reality, which is obvious to me. I like simple. Jim is seldom simple. Folks who comment on his and your blogs are deep and complex thinkers. Fun stuff, but damn! It gets deep.

    I think about these things and have for many, many years. I post my thoughts on my Dispassionate Doubt blog (Broodings and Ponderings of a Pensive Skeptic).

    At least for today if there are multiple choices, I’ll go with, “We live. We die. Life moves on. Nothing to see here, folks.” But maybe I’m wrong. I shall not be pursuing a Ph. D. in Physics, no matter what Jim says.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Mystery? Ah, you mean will Liverpool win the league this season? Hmmmm…. I wonder? Perhaps I should consult a spirit medium? Or maybe a spirit large would be the better option?

      Like

      • A large spirit is good. Like why does some go crazy about a losing team when they could just support the team that is winning at the moment.
        Or why some men and some asses don’t seem to be far apart in thinking. This doesn’t strike you as curious?

        Liked by 2 people

    • Just a question. Are we talking between life and death, or between death and life? If the former, they are definitely extremes. If we are talking the latter, not so much. (LOL)

      Like

  15. After reading the above comments with varying degrees of interest, I have come, almost simultaneously with makagutu, to the same “conclusion” on all the mystery. We are only bound to the span between our arrival and our departure. Contrary to a well-kown expression, I say that the sky is not the limit.
    .+

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I guess, I am nowhere with this. I have never felt anything I can relate to spirituality as such. To me, it is an oldfashioned way of talking about psychological phenomena. The reason why this is how I see it may be, that I am the son of generations of atheists. People who have rejected the idea of supernatural as a plausible explanation to anything appearing within the natural reality we occupy and beyond wich we have no means to observe.

    “I guess what I’m actually asking is … how do YOU see the world? Is it all cut and dried? That is … We live. We die. Life moves on. Nothing to see here, folks.”

    I do not understand this. There is plenty to see. More than I shall ever have the time for. Of course there is more than “meets the eye”, but that is not likely to be in any way supernatural. In the natural world there are things that are natural. The movement of atoms and even smaller particles is perfectly natural. Supernatural is a nother quaint expression (by people who did not know any better) in an attempt to describe that what does not “meet the eye”. The notion that it is not natural, but somehow trancends the natural reality is natural, but not factual.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Actually, rautakyy, I think this is a very good way of explaining “spirituality” — The notion that it is not natural, but somehow transcends the natural reality.

      There are lots of unexplainable things/events that cross our paths, but this doesn’t necessary mean they are “supernatural.” Yet there are untold numbers of individuals who are convinced there is something operating behind the scenes.

      Thank goodness we have scientists who devote their lives to … explaining the unexplainable. 🙂 (Even though there are some, as Jim as referenced, who attempt to combine the two.)

      Liked by 1 person

      • No one is asking me, but if someone were, I would say the spiritual world (just meaning the world of life) is completely natural just that not everyone can see it. Does it really have to be seen by everyone? Does not seeing it demand believing it is not there? We live by our 5 senses, but that does mean there are not senses beyond the 5. The truth is, by the time we find out, one way or the other, or even some 3rd ot 4th way, it will not matter to who we are right now.

        Liked by 1 person

        • IMO, there are LOTS of unexplained things and events that occur throughout our lifetimes. Not all of them can be given a name — or even described. However, because “religion” plays such a large role in humanity, to many people, the word “spiritual” seems to be the by-word most frequently used.

          Perhaps the non-religious need to come up with their own terminology to avoid confusion (and argument!).

          Like

        • I have thought long and hard about that, but the answer keeps coming back to finding something that will have at least a bit of something for most English speakers to recognize at least a little. While my knowledge of the English language is quite extensive, the only established word I could come up with was spirituality. It brings a whole load of baggage, but yet it says it all, because what we have within us — to the best of my understanding — is the “spirit of life.”
          We seldom think of life as anything but a word that describes a condition, the condition of being alive, but to me and some others it is so much more. Living is a force, the driving force between the living and the non-living. Things that never change, unless acted upon by outside forces, such as a rock, aré non-living as far as we currently understand life. Things that change from internal forces, things that have a beginning and an end in physical reality, these things are alive. But when we look for the “living” factor, we find that all living things contain the same factor. We may think people are different from each other, different from other animal species, definitely different from plant species and bacteria, etc., but really there is no difference. We all share life, and the best way to describe that is by calling life “spirit.” And this gives us spirituality.
          Maybe, if I were a worldwide author like Robert Heinlein was in the 60s, I could get away with writing a book around a new word, “grok.” (Stranger in a Strange Land) The word grok entered the English language, and for a decade it was all the rage, reaching far beyond its Science Fiction roots. But nowadays hardly anyone knows that word, because not enough people understood it, let alone could experience it’s meaning.
          Do you remember the word “mod” from the same era? It was everywhere. All it meant was modern, or currently popular. Mod is no longer currently popular. Nothing is mod anymore.
          Words come, and words go, but unless they have deep roots they seldom survive. Spirituality has deep roots, unfortunately for those who use it in a fashion similar to myself. But yet it says what we want it to say. So, until someone with enough power comes along and coins a new word that is graspable by everyone, such as “lifeability” (this just came to me), we are stuck with making do.
          But, having said all that, if you can think up a good word, I’m all for it.

          Like

        • Oh, and by the way, if religion would stick to the word “soul,” and quit confusing it with spirit, that would make things a whole lot easier for proponents of spirituality. But probably too late for that, lol.

          Like

  17. Wow! In places I sit in rapt admiration — it’s a lot like sitting in a rowing boat by night watching battleships just over the horizon slugging it out.

    And now I’ve added a rather pathetic penn’orth, back to the battle.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Wow, Nan, I think this is your best post and all the lucid reasonable intelligent comments said far more eloquently than I could ever say, especially those by Infidel753, tildeb, cagjr and a few others, that I won’t attempt it.
    But just to say, I find woo, spiritually, mysticism, cosmic mind, etc. not much different than a man searching for the true religion ( beliefs based on nothing but desire and a thin hope). Bottom line here, as in religion, is the fervent desire for permanent existence and a sense of purpose to it all.
    The purpose of the universe is to simply exist and our purpose is to make the most of our lives and others, the most fulfilling( in a non material way) as we can, an achievement that is hard to come by.

    Why the big fuss about consciousness? When your brain no longer works, it (the mind) is gone. Perhaps a dried out shell of a memory link that no longer functions.

    We little humans are not so special that the universe is for us and our fabulous consciousness to drift out in space eternally and fabulous worthiness to reincarnate over and over again. We are just a little above an ape, on an ordinary planet in a galaxy that could vaporize tomorrow and would not be missed. We are not this important.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Just to emphasize, I have no desire for existence, permanent or not. We are alive. And so is every other living creature. We are certainly no more important than the bug crawling across my floor that I refuse to step on because it us invading my space. The space, however you want to define it, cannot belong to any one being, except that as best we know, two beings cannot inhabit the exact same space. However, we can certainly share space, as in all the bacteria living inside our bodies share that space with us. And all the cells that make up our bodies are individual living cells that we are told die every 7 years.
      But I wonder, if our lives do not matter (the lives of all living beings, not just humans), can the universe really be said to have a purpose? And why should we want our lives to be fulfilling in any way, materialistic or non-materialistic. Why do we make such a big thing of propogating life. Like a young child, answering every answer with the one word question, why? If there is not a why, there is no need to be “fulfilled.”
      Yet even you want a “fulfilling” life. For me, that answers the why.
      And no one can take that away from me. Peace be with you, Mary.

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