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Re: [existlist] Re: spirituality

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  • Bill Harris
    George, I have practised dentistry for twenty years in a mall. Two days from now I will leave for more quiet environs. I see mass culture becoming mass
    Message 1 of 9 , Jan 21, 2002
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      George, I have practised dentistry for twenty years in a mall. Two days from
      now I will leave for more quiet environs. I see mass culture becoming mass
      boredom. True, we switch from one plaything to another, but many are not
      satisfied. Those excited shoppers of a few years ago are now blank faced. So
      I move on. Maby I will put some difficult pictures on my new, more private
      walls. Perhaps I will inject more content into my drab chairside manner.
      This idiom is worn and something is begging to supplant the tedium. What if
      it were substantive questioning of existance. Could we who asked those
      questions years ago have the courage to put forth ideas of substance? Can
      we risk the rejection of those who have trusted us to be bland? Bill
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "George Walton" <george@...>
      To: <existlist@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Monday, January 21, 2002 12:36 PM
      Subject: Re: [existlist] Re: spirituality


      > Bill,
      >
      > Let me try rephrasing my own approach to philosophy. Perhaps the most
      useful
      > way to encompass it is to expose both the futility and the very real
      danger
      > that the history of philosophy has allowed us to glean to date in
      pondering
      > its myriad apologists' approach: as an adhesive.
      >
      > Philosophy, in other words, should not be pursued, in my opinion, as a way
      > to bring us together so much as to speculate on more effective [practical]
      > ways to keep us from growing farther and farther apart. This point of
      view,
      > I believe, is especially relevant in an age where, with God taking a
      beating
      > day after day in the malls, what is now called "normal nihilism" suffuses
      so
      > much of what is, beyond rational dispute, the most powerful social
      > locomotive on the planet: pop culture. And, of course, the vulgar mass
      > consumption that is its fuel.
      >
      > The paradox for me, however, is that, in a twisted sort of way, pop
      culture
      > may well be the only thing separating us from the Osama bin Ashcrofts of
      the
      > world. Does any brain dead ideologue [including God and Eduard] stand much
      > of a chance in the gigantic shadows of Hollywood, Wal-Mart and the
      National
      > Football League? When they go, alas, one fascist
      > political/theological/ideological rendition or another will fill in the
      > vacuum, I'm sure. After all, they're all just one or the other side of the
      > SAME fascist political/theological/ideological coin, eh? There must be
      > hundreds and hundreds of ways to spell Salvation by now.
      >
      > So, excuse me, please, while I go out and buy something for the cause:
      > democracy!!
      >
      > george
      >
      >
      >
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: Bill Harris <bhvwd@...>
      > To: <existlist@yahoogroups.com>
      > Sent: Monday, January 21, 2002 12:32 PM
      > Subject: Re: [existlist] Re: spirituality
      >
      >
      > > Niz,I begin to see spirtuality as a seeking of common ground with the
      more
      > > dim persons who share this planet. Yet it bothers me beyond the obvious
      > > condesention present in that facade. This universe is not that hard to
      > > explain and can be exposed in simple terms. The worship people always
      > > resort to scare tactics and emotinality. I do not think we have a need
      for
      > > spirtuality, we have a need for security. The need for security grows
      out
      > > of our will to life and fear of death. When stronger minds exploit these
      > > primal motovations in the less intelligent we are at the core of
      social
      > > injustice. To say "It is the way of the world" is a deterministic, self
      > > serving lie. I like the way George attacks this type of situation, he
      > uses
      > > ridicule , and takes, and fiercely occupies the intellectual high
      ground.
      > He
      > > makes no excuse for his greater knowledge of the construct and does
      not
      > > condescend in order to mitigate differences.The hard part is to avoid
      > using
      > > the methods ascribed in Mein Kampt for our motives. We need to tell a
      > > plain, simple, truthful story. Since the story is not particulary
      > pleasant,
      > > we should outline how this view of the construct can lead to a more
      > secure
      > > life. Bill
      > > ----- Original Message -----
      > > From: "nizkoi" <nizkoi@...>
      > > To: <existlist@yahoogroups.com>
      > > Sent: Sunday, January 20, 2002 7:10 AM
      > > Subject: [existlist] Re: spirituality
      > >
      > >
      > > > <<But something else nags us on to seek after spirituality.>>?
      > > >
      > > > Why?
      > > >
      > > > I am but a pimple on the face of insignificance, but one thing I
      > > > think any rational person has to agree with is that you can't
      > > > possibly have any grasp of existence. Having a 'god' is an
      > > > excuse, or wildly grand assumption that you know better.
      > > >
      > > > Try to imagine the number of scenarios by which your existence
      > > > may or may not be influenced by a supremem being. For
      > > > example, consider the brains-in-vats theory where we are
      > > > possibly living in a fake world that is created by electromagnetic
      > > > pulses to our brain that sits in a vat of fluid in another dimension.
      > > > Consider, before you dismiss this, the ultimate endpoint of
      > > > virtual reality and role playing, and how a superior society might
      > > > engage in extended role playing as a vacation from the grim
      > > > reality of a bored eternal existence. Maybe the god you seek is
      > > > yourself.
      > > >
      > > > Spirituality is traditionally sought by those seeking an
      > > > explanation that are willing to be deceived as to its end or origin.
      > > > I'm just too stupid to assume I know of spirituality as an answer.
      > > > And too stupid to figure out which scenario of the many I can
      > > > devise would be more likely than another. It seems no better
      > > > than taking drugs.
      > > >
      > > > The quote from Freud was apropos. It was paraphrased as: "Life
      > > > is all we have ever known & we can't even imagine non-being." It
      > > > begs both the question "Is there more to know?" and "Is it
      > > > possible to know?" Either of which I'll never be smart enough to
      > > > answer.
      > > >
      > > > niz
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
      > > >
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