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Re: Evil and mind cessation

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  • lady_caritas
    ... THINKING, ... discriminator and ... that the ... I don t think it s as simple as stopping thinking for everyone. For instance, the _Gospel of Philip_,
    Message 1 of 39 , Apr 26, 2004
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      --- In gnosticism2@yahoogroups.com, "Gavin Riggott" <wu@n...> wrote:
      > > If what Scott and many teachers say is true: that we must STOP
      THINKING,
      > transcend the mental faculty, become liberated from the
      discriminator and
      > projector of illusion: the mind, then could it be correctly stated
      that the
      > mind is a contributor to evil and so also loss of LIFE?
      >
      > Why must we stop thinking? I don't understand.
      >
      >
      > Gavin Riggott


      I don't think it's as simple as stopping thinking for everyone. For
      instance, the _Gospel of Philip_, which identifies lack of
      acquaintance as "the mother of all evils," states, "Let each of us,
      too, burrow for the root of evil that is within, and root it up from
      his or her heart. It will be rooted up when it is recognized." At
      least according to this one author, this implies an active process,
      does it not? Mentation allows us to recognize and interpret our
      transcendence. I haven't seen anyone here claim that "mentation
      about historical Gnosis, the nature of God, etc." will produce
      Gnosis. It can serve as context though when comparing/contrasting
      our individual experiences. Obviously we're all different and it
      would seem that just one approach or combination of approaches
      wouldn't work for everyone.

      Yes, the human intellect can weave intricate webs of self-deception,
      ignorance, projecting illusions. And, some people find it helpful to
      quiet the mind as a technique to transcend misconceptions that might
      kick in out of habit. But, I also think that the intellect as
      discriminator can be a helpful tool. Those who advocate a "stop
      thinking" track have in fact used their discriminating minds to
      validate their experience in order to make this suggestion.

      Now, OTOH, I know a few highly intelligent people I'd like to shake
      up who try to refute nonrational experiences with their rational
      minds in high gear. Highly reasonable people can rationalize with
      the best of us. We're all capable of self-deception whether we lean
      too strongly to the irrational or conversely the rational.

      That said, we as humans perceive through images. Gnostic literature
      states that we receive "truth in the form of images." (Gospel of
      Philip) And, scripture also talks about different kinds of images.

      In _The Gospel of Thomas_, "Jesus said, `When you (plur.) see your
      resemblance you are happy. But when you see your images that came
      into existence before you and are neither mortal nor visible, how
      much you will have to bear.'"

      No easy road, this Gnosis. It transcends feel-good human image
      projections.

      A view regarding entry into the bridal chamber, "... it is through
      contemptible representations and powerless things that we shall
      enter. They are contemptible compared to perfect glory – there is
      glory superior to glory, and power superior to power. Thus perfect
      things were opened to us, along with hidden aspects of truth. And
      the holies of holies was uncovered. And the bedroom invites us in."
      (GPh)


      Cari
    • pmcvflag
      Hey Scott, before I jump into the subject matter, I wanted to ask you to please not add attachments or format your posts to such a heavy degree. The reason for
      Message 39 of 39 , Apr 27, 2004
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        Hey Scott, before I jump into the subject matter, I wanted to ask
        you to please not add attachments or format your posts to such a
        heavy degree. The reason for this is that Yahoo gives us a limited
        amount of space and they start erasing earlier posts when we reach
        that limit. You would be suprised by just how large these posts are
        in comparison to the average post. (this goes for everyone. It is
        not a rule that we ever officially instituted, I am only asking this
        as a favor at this time)

        Anyways, on to the subject.

        I don't feel, Scott, that you really fully answered Lady Cari's
        points. I mean, sure you told us what YOU believe about overcomming
        concious thought, and it is a belief that most of us have heard many
        times before and are well familiar with. However, what Cari offered
        was Gnostic scripture that pretty explicetly draw into question
        whether the historical Gnostics would have agreed with you. I am not
        saying your beliefs are not valid, just that you only answered her
        by repeating your personal feelings rather than giving us some
        scriptural context to connect it with the focus of this club
        (namely, traditional Gnosticism).

        Buddhist ideas are certainly an interesting subject, but can you
        tell us how you feel that your ideas are compared to those offered
        in Gnostic texts?

        Then, to go on to your answer to Gavin.... I get the impression that
        you are linking the Pleroma with the Source... the ALL with the
        Father of the all, in a way that is starting to sound rather
        pantheistic. I am not sure if you intend that, or if I am just
        reading a bit too much into what you are trying to say (feel free to
        clarify that point if you wish), but I don't believe pantheism is
        supported in the Gnostic belief system at all (and the conversation
        between Mike and I demonstrates quite well the textual evidence for
        the Gnostic belief in just how separate the Father is). Perhaps you
        would like to offer some textual evidence in support of that?

        Once again, this has nothing to do with whether or not what you say
        it true in the spiritual spectrum, that we cannot demonstrate.
        Instead, as I have so often pointed out, to so many others here, it
        is about demonstrating whether your points are
        categorically "Gnostic".

        PMCV


        > When we actually sit quietly, and make no tense "effort" to think
        a certain thought, or feel a certain feeling, then this is the
        condition of meditation or prayer. It is a passive condition, and in
        this passive condition, all sorts of thoughts and emotions arise *of
        themselves* without the least provocation on our part and without us
        doing a thing to either evoke or dispel them. If we were to try to
        evoke a certain thought or line of thought this would show
        partiality and attachment to this thought, and with both of these
        phenomena, a sense of "I-ness" or self-centredness is integral.
        Thoughts are like clouds that cover the face of God. If we try and
        actively get rid of them, we only disturb the mind more and also
        create an opposition between one part of the mind and the other. We
        then fall into dualistic perception, conflict and tension and a
        prayerful condition is hindered. The part (of mind) that dominates
        the other and tries to suppress thought, we erroneously label
        *will*, which as understood by most people is nothing more than the
        feeling of tension that arises when we attempt to retard or stop
        some unpleasant state of being. As for the quote from Phillip, I
        wholeheartedly agree. We simply allow thoughts, positive or
        negative, to arise before the light of conciousness. By not
        intrefering in this process, we see these thoughts -- in the form of
        lusts, manipulative tenddencies, and the vast plethora of egoistic
        tricks -- as they really ARE without distortion. But if we are
        *actively* engaging ourselves in this process of trying to eliminate
        unpleasant or dark thoughts, then this active process, itself
        revealing tendencies of like and dislike, desire, and so on --
        itself becomes part of the problem, part of the thinking process
        that we want to end so that we can access deepr states of
        conciousness and eventually acheive communion with God. Can you see
        from this explanation how God cannot act, create, or do anything.
        That the highest, ultimate principle of reality must be at all
        times, through all eternity, quiescent. Anything that moves, or
        acts, does so within time and space and is of the mind. But God is
        beyond mind. God does not move or change. He is the still centre
        around which the circumference of creation -- the "outer darkness" --
        moves. Stop the mind and you will know God.
        >
        >
        > Mentation allows us to recognize and interpret our
        > transcendence.
        >
        >
        > Transcendence speaks for itself. Interpretation is personal,
        subjective. Already you have talked of "our" transcendence as if it
        were a personal thing. But trancendence is transcendence OF
        anything/everything personal. By making it 'yours" or "mine" you've
        turned it into another possession of the ego and are simply erecting
        another layer of support for your "I" or personal/psychic layer of
        conciousness.
        >
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