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KennyK

What is the root to all evil..?

104 posts in this topic
59 minutes ago, neeeel said:

rofl so we dont need the principle of sufficient reason then

 

How is necessity not a sufficient reason?

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11 minutes ago, Donnadogsoth said:

How is necessity not a sufficient reason?

ok, the universe exists as a necessity

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16 minutes ago, neeeel said:

ok, the universe exists as a necessity

The Universe changes. That which changes is not æternal.

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7 hours ago, Soulfire said:

With respect to people's views on here, I do need to make the case for Buddhism NOT being totally nihilistic. I know that the first Noble Truth makes it look that way, but hear me out: when Gautama says that all life is suffering, he doesn't mean that everything is just terrible and you may as well bump yourself off. What he means is that, even when there is pleasure, there must be an end to pleasure, because nothing in life is permanent (see the end of this post for the list of the three characteristics of existence according to Buddhism). Well, if nothing is permanent, and pleasure must therefore of necessity have an end, well, one feels compelled to seek further and/or different pleasures, which are also fleeting, and this cycle continues. Rather, the Buddha suggests that we not be attached to a need for pleasure. He does NOT say that it is wrong to have pleasure, or that pleasure is exactly empty, per se, but simply that we should not believe it to be lasting, and that we should also not believe it to be the only purpose of our lives. An extremity of that is called hedonism and we all know how bad that is for us.

 

Anyway, the three characteristics of existence...

 

1. All of life is unsatisfactory

2. All of life is impermanent

3. All of life is soulless (as in lacking a consistent "soul" or "self"; this one lines up with #2)

Agree with points 1 and 2(Never stepping in the same river twice.) Could you elaborate on point 3, what is meant by the soul and self?

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On 4/16/2017 at 7:30 AM, Soulfire said:

And in terms of Buddhism, no, you can't escape Samsara just by bumping yourself off, or through any other mode of death. The only way to escape the eternality of life and death, and therefore suffering, is to break free of attachments and work towards true freedom.

Mahayana solipsism.

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What is meant by the soul in this case? The supposedly eternal and unchanging aspect of the self. The Buddha argues against the Abrahamic and Hindu understanding of the soul: that there is, somewhere located within you, a thing--essence, identity, or otherwise--that does not change over time, that lives outside of the body once the body dies, and lived before the body was formed. Buddha argues that there is no such thing and, some days, I'm tempted to agree with him. I'd love to believe in Afterlife, mind you, but that's my Christian roots coming out. In the West, we're taught to fear death. Mind you, of course, that's our survival instinct there to protect us, of course, but the Mahabharata (Hindu, I know, but I do have a point that applies to Buddhism here) says not to fear death. The Lord says not to fear for the body specifically, anyway, because in the Hindu view, there is reincarnation, as there is in the Buddhist view, but it's not "you" that reincarnated according to Buddhism, because there is no "you" as such. Think of it this way: we say "my soul" in the same way as we say "my couch" or even "my arm", but who is this "my"? It would be implied in the Abrahamic and Hindu views that this "my" is the soul, but you're saying "my soul" as if it were something other, if you know what I mean: just one part of "you". But if you look around for it, you can't really identify this "my", this possessor, any further than in your own mind, which of course had a beginning and will have an end. So, Anatman. No Self.

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1 hour ago, Soulfire said:

What is meant by the soul in this case? The supposedly eternal and unchanging aspect of the self. The Buddha argues against the Abrahamic and Hindu understanding of the soul: that there is, somewhere located within you, a thing--essence, identity, or otherwise--that does not change over time, that lives outside of the body once the body dies, and lived before the body was formed. Buddha argues that there is no such thing and, some days, I'm tempted to agree with him. I'd love to believe in Afterlife, mind you, but that's my Christian roots coming out. In the West, we're taught to fear death. Mind you, of course, that's our survival instinct there to protect us, of course, but the Mahabharata (Hindu, I know, but I do have a point that applies to Buddhism here) says not to fear death. The Lord says not to fear for the body specifically, anyway, because in the Hindu view, there is reincarnation, as there is in the Buddhist view, but it's not "you" that reincarnated according to Buddhism, because there is no "you" as such. Think of it this way: we say "my soul" in the same way as we say "my couch" or even "my arm", but who is this "my"? It would be implied in the Abrahamic and Hindu views that this "my" is the soul, but you're saying "my soul" as if it were something other, if you know what I mean: just one part of "you". But if you look around for it, you can't really identify this "my", this possessor, any further than in your own mind, which of course had a beginning and will have an end. So, Anatman. No Self.

If there is no Self, then there is no reincarnation of Self, which means there is no wheel of rebirth, for, who, exactly, is being reborn?  And if there is no Self in me, there is no Self in you, nor in anyone else, which means my love for you and for others is vain.  I might therefore simply find my painkiller of choice.  Do as thou wilt.

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8 hours ago, Soulfire said:

What is meant by the soul in this case? The supposedly eternal and unchanging aspect of the self. The Buddha argues against the Abrahamic and Hindu understanding of the soul: that there is, somewhere located within you, a thing--essence, identity, or otherwise--that does not change over time, that lives outside of the body once the body dies, and lived before the body was formed. Buddha argues that there is no such thing and, some days, I'm tempted to agree with him. I'd love to believe in Afterlife, mind you, but that's my Christian roots coming out. In the West, we're taught to fear death.

So the Soul and Self are interrelated? What would you say is the unchanging aspect of the self, without saying soul, perhaps if it can not be expressed in words can it be expressed in experience or imagery? Yes there are worse things than death.

8 hours ago, Soulfire said:

Mind you, of course, that's our survival instinct there to protect us, of course, but the Mahabharata (Hindu, I know, but I do have a point that applies to Buddhism here) says not to fear death. The Lord says not to fear for the body specifically, anyway, because in the Hindu view, there is reincarnation, as there is in the Buddhist view, but it's not "you" that reincarnated according to Buddhism, because there is no "you" as such. Think of it this way: we say "my soul" in the same way as we say "my couch" or even "my arm", but who is this "my"? It would be implied in the Abrahamic and Hindu views that this "my" is the soul, but you're saying "my soul" as if it were something other, if you know what I mean: just one part of "you". But if you look around for it, you can't really identify this "my", this possessor, any further than in your own mind, which of course had a beginning and will have an end. So, Anatman. No Self.

Yes ultimately there is no self, yet we still use pronouns. If there is no self, it does bring up the question of how can Ethics be applicable? There is still a "Self" or maybe Conscience(soul?) even if it is a limited construct or illusion or perhaps not, speculating... The question of where the self is located, was recently addressed in another thread as being in the Parietal Lobe, though that still brings up a potential further question of which part? "You cut up his brain, you bloody baboon." Probably no neurosurgeons on the forum, but who knows. In terms of processing power of the Brain adding additional fluff to the Ego; I am this, I am that. Would that retract from processing power of perhaps expand it? What purpose other than social or "mystical" would it serve.

Was Listening to a video on "Jacobs Ladder" a story from the Bible after listening to bits of a movie review of a film by the same name. Anyway, in the story Jacob the founder of Israel (means struggle with God, from the documentary), wrestles with an entity that has no name, basically busts Jacob up but doesn't kill him, maybe something like the movie "Fight Club". 

 

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Well, in my own experience, let's use the example of the fact that I am a completely unabashed daddy's girl. I love my father to no end, and that has never changed. But the quality of my love for him has changed: when I was a child, I loved him as my apparently omnipotent protector, the guiding force. Now, knowing through experience that he is not omnipotent, as all children will eventually learn of their parents, I love him as my friend, rather than my guardian. In opposition to the Buddhist doctrine, therefore, in this particular example, I would say that the love itself is a constant, despite its changing nature. Buddha, though, would say that, because the love has changed in nature, it is not the same love, and therefore not a constant. So it boils down to a question of quality versus actuality of my love for my father, though I don't know what the Buddha would say regarding the fact of my feelings: the concept itself. I should ask my "guru". Emphasis on the quotation marks because he's actually my professor of Eastern Philosophy and doesn't like it when I call him guru. As for any other example you can yourself think of, it might come down to the same thing: the quality of the supposed constant versus the fact of it being there at all. I'm not sure how to make answer to that. I need someone smarter than me to help me out, hence asking my professor.

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Quote

The Dalai Lama himself has said that Buddhism is a scientific philosophy and that, ..

So I bet Buddhists and their millenia old wisdom are on the cutting edge of modern technologie.

Or at least in the top five ranking of nobel prizes.

Or at least the Buddhist monks invented some kind of machinery to ease the lives of those who maltreated themselves to produce the food for them.

None of all this?

Quote

The world is so cynical now and I fully intend to retain my optimism.

Yes, the world is cynical. Its cynical because the world is full of dangerous and wrong philosphies. While Buddhism is for shure not the most dangerous one ist makes its contribution. Nobody can seriously claim to search for the truth and speak about rebirth in the same sentence. Buddhism pretends to teach deep thoughts, instead it forces to think in loops with meaningless definitions.

 

Quote

"Who knows what is good or bad?"

If you are taught not to know whats good or bad, you are taught to be a slave.

And that what it is all about: The Buddhist monks were the aristocrats, and the farmes, who worked for them, were advised not to judge if they wanted to have a chance for Nirwana. And yes, you are right: The buddhist "philosophy" is cynical.

 

regards

Andi

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57 minutes ago, Goldenages said:

So I bet Buddhists and their millenia old wisdom are on the cutting edge of mordern technologie.

Or at least in the top five ranking of nobel prizes.

Or at least the Buddhist monks invented some kind of machinery to ease the lives of those who maltreated themselves to produce the food for them.

None of all this?

Well there is Japan and South Korea. I'd imagine that Tibet and Mongolia have pretty harsh climates, so a large proportion is farming, at least until recently or their starving to death. The Christian church had tithes and Indulgences in the past. Stefan isn't exactly producing new technologies or winning Nobel Prizes like Obama.

 

1 hour ago, Goldenages said:

Yes, the world is cynical. Its cynical because the world is full of dangerous and wrong philosphies. While Buddhism is for shure not the most dangerous one ist makes its contribution. Nobody can seriously claim to search for the truth and speak about rebirth in the same sentence. Buddhism pretends to teach deep thoughts, instead it forces to think in loops with meaningless definitions.

Isn't the point of Buddhism, that it doesn't force you? Reincarnation sounds superfluous, even if by some comprehensible situation it turns out to be actual in someway.

 

1 hour ago, Goldenages said:

If you are taught not to know whats good or bad, you are taught to be a slave.

And that what it is all about: The Buddhist monks were the aristocrats, and the farmes, who worked for them, were advised not to judge if they wanted to have a chance for Nirwana. And yes, you are right: The buddhist "philosophy" is cynical.

Nietzsche seemed to think the opposite in Beyond Good and Evil. I think Bad instead of Evil in the Title, may have been more appropriate, especially with career politicians reading it, though doesn't sound as right.

In the Bible there is a passage that says  "judge not lest ye be judged". Buddhism might be cynical in a "good way" considering that Europe is being overrun with a Middle East invasion. What was the birth rate in Germany like 1.1 Children per women? I remember seeing the Dalai Lama on TV criticising mass immigration into Europe, probably like in Tibet from China.

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Good insights, GoldenAges, but I do have a few corrections to make, if you don't mind.

 

1. The Parable of Good or Bad is largely based on one's perspective. It states that good and evil are a matter of perspective merely. Think about it: as an extreme example, did Hitler believe that what he was doing was evil? Likely not, either because he had no sense of conscience, which Buddhists would not advocate, or because he truly believed that what he was doing was for the better, and in the wider interests of his nation. As I say, that is an extreme example, but it's true for lighter things. The bad guys in movies don't tend to think of themselves as bad guys, you know? And who, anyway, are we to judge of another's actions, when we can't get into their heads and see their motivations?

 

2. Yes, monks in the Buddhist tradition do beg for their food, but that is only because it's unlawful for them to handle money, largely for the sake of suppressing avarice. Also, in the Zen tradition at least, the general rule is that a monk must do something to earn his food, and so many of them are farmers and councilors and the like. The rule is "You don't work, you don't eat", and their line of work must always be something beneficial to the wider community.

 

3. Buddhism is a philosophy, not a science. It is not the duty of the monks or of the Dalai Lama to come up with scientific inventions. However, there has been actual scientific research done on the brains of monks to show to the West the benefits of their lifestyle, with a heavy emphasis on their meditation practices. There is more than one reason why such things as Yoga and meditation have been brought over to the West. Yoga is a Hindu thing, mind you, but it falls under the same general category of "Eastern shit that's good for you". And I personally don't just mean the exercise-based Yoga that Swami Kuvalayananda brought over. I'm talking about the spiritual Yogas, but, again, another topic for another time.    

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1 hour ago, Soulfire said:

1. The Parable of Good or Bad is largely based on one's perspective. It states that good and evil are a matter of perspective merely. Think about it: as an extreme example, did Hitler believe that what he was doing was evil? Likely not, either because he had no sense of conscience, which Buddhists would not advocate, or because he truly believed that what he was doing was for the better, and in the wider interests of his nation.    

Nobody said anything when I posted "Mahayana solipsism", and this is case in point. Even if the idea of samsara is taken for granted, simply accepting it for what it is to in order to achieve nirvana is ridiculous. It's simply a mind game to allow a person to flip in and out of personal responsibility at will. If I don't want to act, I can always just claim "things are perfect the way they are because all moments are empty".

Good and bad may require perspective to figure out, but it's not based on perspective. Hitler's beliefs did not have a causal connection to affect the morality of his actions. If his perspective did not allow him to see the immorality, then his perspective was massively damaged. You can't magic away moral agency with intention.

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I agree with you in that, objectively, Hitler's actions would see, exceptionally immoral. God knows I'm not arguing against that. I'm not a Nazi sympathizer and in fact I'd be one of the first they'd kill, despite being white. I've got a lot of disabilities and I'm very liberally-minded. That would be an issue for them.

 

Anyway, in regard to Mahayana, the Doctrine of Emptiness does state that all things are empty, yes, but that all depends on what you mean by "empty". I posed the three characteristics of existence somewhere around here, and one of them is "Anatman", or soullessness. That is, all things are, in the Buddhist view, taught to be without a lasting essence, which may in fact be true. Are you the same "you" as the one who woke this morning? Possibly, in terms of your intellect, worldview, and other mental factors, but in reality you are not the same "you" at all, even in a scientific sense. Cells have died and replicated, innumerable chemical reactions have happened within you to very subtly change your interior anatomy, and so forth. In that sense, all things are empty. The Yogachara school argues against this, saying that consciousness is in some ways real, though NOT eternal. They do agree with Mahayana that nothing is eternal, or carried over from one life to another. On that note, by the way, I'm not entirely sure whether I personally accept the doctrine of Samsara. It's a possibility, certainly, but that's as broad a statement as saying that it would be possible to get to Neptune so long as you go far enough. Possible, but perhaps unlikely. Also, though, one does not accept the idea of Samsara in order to gain Enlightenment. That's not one of the conditions of gaining Enlightenment, though there is more than one way, I think, to skin a cat when it comes to that. Enlightenment, at least for me, is not necessarily the same as accepting the reality of the three characteristics of existence or the Four Noble Truths. There could be literally thousands of ways to gain Enlightenment, which is why I'm also a fan of Jainism. Strictest code of nonviolence, and that's it. Very simple and also very doable if you've got the right attitude. But I digress.

 

PS: What do you mean by saying "Hitler's beliefs did not have a causal connection to affect the morality of his actions"? Of course one's beliefs will inform their actions. Unless I'm misunderstanding you?

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2 hours ago, Soulfire said:

The Parable of Good or Bad is largely based on one's perspective. It states that good and evil are a matter of perspective merely.

 

And here we have the root of all evil. If there is no objective way to find out what is good and what is bad, and we leave this fundamental question to religion, or choose not to judge at all, man is a victim of his and his neighbours whims.

 

2 hours ago, Soulfire said:

Yes, monks in the Buddhist tradition do beg for their food, but that is only because it's unlawful for them to handle money, largely for the sake of suppressing avarice.

Reminds me of the socialistic attitude: am good. I care for poor and for the refugees. But I am too noble to get my hands dirty with work, so you pay for it. You earn money and are therefore greedy.

 

regards

Andi

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Changing between Bad and Evil.

Good and Bad are preferences, and reasons in the person. What is the most Good and What is the most Bad?

Evil is an ethical matter. If someone, person (A) physically injures another person (B) out of malice. The injured person(B) then finds out they have a tumour from a trip to the hospital the fact person (A) injured them was still Evil, even if it did person (B) some good. Evil from the Conscientious Intention to do Evil and the presumable lack of consent of the other. The issue being the conflict over abusing the personal property(Body) of person (B). 

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GoldenAges, the first half of your above argument sounds like the whole "Atheists just want to sin" thing, if you ask me. Living without God, they are depicted in the minds of the ignorant of just wanting to sin, free of consequence. I know that's a bit of a non-sequitur, but I promise I have a point. To say that there is no such thing, really, as good and evil is not the same as giving yourself a license to commit what would be perceived as evil by others who do not share your understanding, or as simply going along with your own whims. To understand that others suffer is to have true compassion, and you would therefore not want to cause them (what they perceive as) harm. That's why the Jain philosophy is to do no harm, that's why the Buddhist monks take a vow of nonviolence, even to animals and plants. Speaking of monks, though, I think you misunderstood my meaning: in the Zen tradition at least, the monks do work for what they are given. Did I not clarify that point? Many monks in other traditions are teachers as well, I mean like in schools in rural areas and such. They also perform ceremonies and rituals like any priest in the West would, so it's a full-time job, really. Also, as I understand it, it's not like they ask for a lot. In most orders, the monks will only eat one small vegetarian meal every day, so it's not like they're going from house to house asking for three square meals every single day. Plus you'll get the ascetic monks who will do even less than that. Heck, when he was practicing the Shramana path, the Buddha ate so little that, the story goes, he could stick his finger in his navel and feel his own spinal cord by one point. So it's not like they're being leeches on society.  

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3 hours ago, Soulfire said:

To say that there is no such thing, really, as good and evil is not the same as giving yourself a license to commit what would be perceived as evil by others who do not share your understanding, or as simply going along with your own whims. To understand that others suffer is to have true compassion, and you would therefore not want to cause them (what they perceive as) harm.

So what you (or Buddhism) say is that nobody knows what is good or bad.

But nonetheless this does not allow me to do things that would be percieved as evil by others who do not share my understanding. From which understanding do we speak now, cause who am I that I should judge? How should I know what others understand as bad? How can others understand whats bad, cause - see above - nobody knows whats good or bad? How can I have true compassion if neither I nor anybody else knows whats good or bad?

Thats all a shapeless and unlogic. It paralyzes mind and is no help for anything. People who are strictly taught that way fall back on their instincts, and one can only hope that those are not evil.

 

3 hours ago, Soulfire said:

In most orders, the monks will only eat one small vegetarian meal every day, so it's not like they're going from house to house asking for three square meals every single day. Plus you'll get the ascetic monks who will do even less than that

Every honest man knows that nobody can consume more than he or she produces.  Monks who spread queer so called wisdoms to breed slaves and live on the expense of other, rather poor, people, are one more cause for the evil in the world.

 

regards

Andi

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"Do not do unto others what you would find harmful to yourself."

 

That's the Golden Rule, found in literally every religion on Earth in some form or another. Though the fully Enlightened individual would not perceive anything as being harmful to themselves, they would understand that, from the universal standpoint, that is, the standpoint of the in-Enlightened, this or that may be perceived as bad, and so, such a person would refrain from committing such actions. Every religion also has a code of law by which to live: don't steal, don't kill, don't commit adultery, and the like. That comes down to the Abrahamic religions at least from Hammurabi's Code, but the general idea is the same anywhere you go. Though individuals who have freed themselves from ego and identification of the "self that suffers" may exist, and would know that no pain is eternal any more than any pleasure is, those universal standards are required. Mr. Molyneux even talks about "universally preferable behaviour", which is basically the same thing: the non-aggression principle and the like. That's all based on the earlier codes of ethics that you get out of religious and philosophical systems, which in turn got their ethics from very ancient codes of law like the one made by Hammurabi in Mesopotamia.

 

By the way, I'm not claiming to be Enlightened myself, here. There's a shitload more I'd need to learn and understand before I could claim that, though I think it would be pretty awesome for me to be the first female Buddha. LOL.  

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7 hours ago, Soulfire said:

"Do not do unto others what you would find harmful to yourself."

 

7 hours ago, Soulfire said:

: don't steal, don't kill, don't commit adultery, and the like

 

Well, so you do have to know whats good and whats bad. This is a contradiction to what Buddha said, right?  Obviously at least one statement (maybe both) is wrong.

 

7 hours ago, Soulfire said:

There's a shitload more I'd need to learn and understand before I could claim that, though I think it would be pretty awesome for me to be the first female Buddha. LOL.  

I wish you all the best ;)   Nevertheless, after all the esoteric stuff,  I might suggest that you have a look into the UPB book that Stefan wrote.

 

regards

Andi

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8 hours ago, Soulfire said:

"Do not do unto others what you would find harmful to yourself."

 

That's the Golden Rule, found in literally every religion on Earth in some form or another. Though the fully Enlightened individual would not perceive anything as being harmful to themselves, they would understand that, from the universal standpoint, that is, the standpoint of the in-Enlightened, this or that may be perceived as bad, and so, such a person would refrain from committing such actions.

Problem with that rule, is some people are Sado-Masochists. (Sadism, actually based on a real person, Marquis de sade) I think the ulterior version is better "whoever has the gold makes the rules."

 

8 hours ago, Soulfire said:

Every religion also has a code of law by which to live: don't steal, don't kill, don't commit adultery, and the like. That comes down to the Abrahamic religions at least from Hammurabi's Code, but the general idea is the same anywhere you go. Though individuals who have freed themselves from ego and identification of the "self that suffers" may exist, and would know that no pain is eternal any more than any pleasure is, those universal standards are required. Mr. Molyneux even talks about "universally preferable behaviour", which is basically the same thing: the non-aggression principle and the like. That's all based on the earlier codes of ethics that you get out of religious and philosophical systems, which in turn got their ethics from very ancient codes of law like the one made by Hammurabi in Mesopotamia.

I don't think Taoism has a Code of Laws, but I haven't looked much into it. I think Stefan's UPB which extends to taxation, unlike Kant's Moral Imperative and "Duty"(Deontology) Ethics which Kant doesn't extend to taxation for political reasons, overcomes the Subject and Object problem in Ethics. The English legal system was based on mostly common law and not a Code of Laws, one benefit to society being that an individual could not just look at positive laws and factor them in as occupational hazards or to gain near absolute political power.

 

9 hours ago, Soulfire said:

By the way, I'm not claiming to be Enlightened myself, here. There's a shitload more I'd need to learn and understand before I could claim that, though I think it would be pretty awesome for me to be the first female Buddha. LOL.  

Quite a bit of information out there on the Internet. The nature of being is a question that comes to mind or Substance Theory; whether reality and existence is Monism, Dualism, Pluralism or something else etc.

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No, I won't read any of Stefan's literature. Unfortunately, intelligent though he is, brilliant though he is, I don't agree with a lot of what he talks about. The way he talks about women is appallingly disgusting to me, and his views on other cultures is rather too medieval for me. Is he not himself an immigrant, or a descendant of immigrants? No one who lives in North America can claim otherwise unless they're First Nation, which he is not.

 

At any rate, firstly to you, GoldenAges, as I said, those who are Enlightened see no difference between good and evil, but merely see other people's capacity to suffer due to the fact that they are unaware that the dichotomy is false. Esoteric though it may be, UPB and all other modern codes are based on this original understanding, as previously mentioned.

 

Secondly, RichardY, I am personally a monist, though I don't hate the Daoist view which at any rate is a form of monism anyway, since the Yin and Yang contain one another and move through each other. Do you know that you and I are related by blood? The closer you are to someone geographically, the higher the consanguinity, but you and I are very, very distant cousins, as you and I are with literally everyone and everything else on Earth. We're all connected. Everything came from the "singularity" at the start of things anyway. We all have a common root. And that's pretty badass. :) 

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4 hours ago, Soulfire said:

No, I won't read any of Stefan's literature. Unfortunately, intelligent though he is, brilliant though he is, I don't agree with a lot of what he talks about. The way he talks about women is appallingly disgusting to me, and his views on other cultures is rather too medieval for me. Is he not himself an immigrant, or a descendant of immigrants? No one who lives in North America can claim otherwise unless they're First Nation, which he is not.

Stefan isn't against immigration, he even said he emigrated from the UK. What he doesn't agree with is people being threatened into paying towards welfare programs for migrants when they don't wish to, he isn't against charity. I thought UPB was a fair book as a methodology for Ethics, it's quite short. If you have an alternative book about Ethics or its refutation, I'm open to have a look. On Youtube at least imo Stefan is the most able person to show truths(even ones that maybe uncomfortable) that may help avoid immense suffering, though if you know someone better please tell.  As a side note I've visited BC and Alberta as a backpacker a while a go.

4 hours ago, Soulfire said:

Secondly, RichardY, I am personally a monist, though I don't hate the Daoist view which at any rate is a form of monism anyway, since the Yin and Yang contain one another and move through each other. Do you know that you and I are related by blood? The closer you are to someone geographically, the higher the consanguinity, but you and I are very, very distant cousins, as you and I are with literally everyone and everything else on Earth. We're all connected. Everything came from the "singularity" at the start of things anyway. We all have a common root. And that's pretty badass. :) 

Haven't looked much into Daoism so far, kind of makes some sense after listening to some work and information on and of Carl Jung. To be honest I've never felt connected to anyone, not even myself. 

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Oh, have you been to Canada? I do like living in a country that isn't important enough to cause giant wars around it, either for territory or resources, though, when water starts running out, America is going to be on us like white on rice.

 

Daoism is the practice of maintaining the forces of Yin (soft, female, black, moon, left, down, take) and Yang (hard, male, white, sun, right, up, give) in perfect balance. Note that I do not include "good" or "evil" in the description, and neither does philosophical Daoism. The two forces are intertwined, equal, and opposite in every way, but they are both neutral in affiliation. Daoism is the way of nature. Think of your own breath: there is always an in, and always an out. The "in" is Yang and the "out" is Yin. However, note that, in the above descriptions, none of the individual traits within the two sections have much to do with one another. I mean that "take" and "female" are not related. It's the "take" to be related to the "give" and the "female" to be related to the "male", you see?

 

You want an excellent philosopher whose lectures are found on YouTube. Alan Watts. My own personal spiritual guide, despite, you know, being dead and all. He's phenomenal and much smarter and gentler than Stefan could ever be, if you ask me. But then again, I love Watts, so I'm biased. I can admit that.  

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Ok, I will take a shot at this...

 

 The belief that by a sense of "need" you have the right to take.

 

Fits resources, fits taking a life, fits emotional abuse...yea.. I will go with that, it all starts there.

 

 

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Eh? What do you mean, exactly? The thing is, when abuse and the like are in the picture, that denotes an overbalance of Yang, which is the harder, push force. Hell, the entire reason Daoism was invented was to deal with the extremely long-lasting of the Warring States Period in China (475BCE-221BCE), in which Lao Tzu believed that Yang had become far too powerful a force, and sought, through his philosophical approach, to inject a little bit of Yin into the situation. Neither of the energies are good or bad, but if one is too dominant over the other, imbalance occurs, and Wu Wei (the way of the Universe, the way of nature) is lost. Confucianism was also created during this time period and sought, through different means, to deal with the same issue. Though Confucianism became the more popular of the two amongst the Chinese aristocrats of the time, as it dealt with what the height of society ought to be like, I personally much prefer Daoism to Confucianism because it's just more natural. Confucianism isn't even one of my "big seven", or the seven religions that I practice, though under the banner of Pantheism, all at the same time. I'll also switch what religion I practice depending on the day of the week. I'm very easygoing when it comes to stuff like this, as I'm sure you can tell.

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On 4/19/2017 at 8:22 AM, Soulfire said:

I agree with you in that, objectively, Hitler's actions would see, exceptionally immoral.

I'm assuming you meant "seem" here instead of "see", as the sentence makes sense with the former.

You are not agreeing with me, because I never said that Hitler's actions seem exceptionally immoral. I said they were.

On 4/19/2017 at 8:22 AM, Soulfire said:

Are you the same "you" as the one who woke this morning? Possibly, in terms of your intellect, worldview, and other mental factors, but in reality you are not the same "you" at all, even in a scientific sense. Cells have died and replicated, innumerable chemical reactions have happened within you to very subtly change your interior anatomy, and so forth. In that sense, all things are empty. 

 

Why would it matter if I'm the same me from moment to moment, and what does it have to do with morality?

 

On 4/19/2017 at 8:22 AM, Soulfire said:

PS: What do you mean by saying "Hitler's beliefs did not have a causal connection to affect the morality of his actions"? Of course one's beliefs will inform their actions. Unless I'm misunderstanding you?

You literally changed the active verb of my point from one sentence to the next. I said "affect" and you said "inform". Who is misunderstanding whom?

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Yes, I meant "seem", though we're all entitled to a few mistakes and I just used one of mine up. ;) 

Hitler was too much in line with his own Yang force, much to in line with it, not allowing for any Yin. That's not a safe frame of mind to have if you're trying to do good in the world, obviously, because Yang is the "push" force, and, combined with the level of mental illness he had, it can raise some real shit. Unfortunately, when too much Yang is in one place, it will fuck shit up because Yang and Yin are meant to work together, but not Yang and Yang. It's like putting two positives or negatives of magnets together. They'll repel rather than uniting. So, in this case, we had a positive-positive overbalance, as Yang is the (in terms of magnetics, not morality) the positive force. It's just a metaphor, but work with me here. A good Daoist would know to balance all the Yang that was out there at the time with a good, healthy dose of Yin, but he wasn't thinking like that, of course. I doubt that anyone in power at that time was really thinking with their heads and hearts so much as they were thinking with their asses and muscles, and that's how wars happen.

 

Yin: Black, female, down, pull, take, feel

Yang: White, male, up, push, give, think

 

You MUST balance those in order to live a healthy life. Even in ordinary life now, there is far, far too much emphasis put on the Yang, not the Yin. There has never, ever, in the course of all human history, been a time at which Yin was the universally dominant force, and THAT is a problem. I'm well aware that none of these people were Daoist, probably hadn't even heard of it to be fair, but trust me, it's helpful.

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"A Clockwork Orange", Rich? What about it? I've never seen it or read it so I don't get the reference.

 

Sorry, Dylan, what WERE we talking about? Remind me. I've got exams on the brain. Just a little synopsis, please? And then I'll attempt to address your point in such a way as to satisfy your desire for a response. Just bear in mind that what I say and believe is what I say and believe and I'm not going to change it at the drop of a hat. It took me almost ten years to get where I am now in terms of my faith and my reasoning and I've got a long way to go still. If I'm not smart enough to answer you in a conclusive way, I'm willing to admit it, but yes, a synopsis would be appreciated at this time of year when my mind is more than a little bit preoccupied. Thanks.

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You can scroll up and read what I wrote just as easily as I can. In fact it would probably take less time then writing a large paragraph about the distraction of exams and your approach of a predetermined outcome.

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