The Nature of Evil

Discussion of the nature of Ultimate Reality and the path to Enlightenment.

Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Diebert van Rhijn » Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:12 am

jupiviv wrote:
Diebert van Rhijn wrote:That's the spirit! Caught between the two horses of positivism and nihilism.


There is no conflict between positivism and nihilism.


You were phrasing them in opposite roles, not me. Don't turn your profound statement into an accident now!

There is nothing that is inherently evil. Generally it means that which negates good(so, ultimately, everything else except the good).


Good means what is being desired while evil means what is being resisted. One "makes" good or bad, in the act, not in the thing. Role reversal happening all the time here.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Alex T. Jacob » Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:20 am

Any diagnostic is problematic, this is very true. But I do want to say that I mean grandiosity in a very specific sense, as in spiritual grandiosity, or having a grandiose sense of oneself as a messenger or Teacher, and especially as one who 'claims' a style of spirituality or a vision of the spiritual as the only way, or the superior way. At this point---grandiose prose or creation of a grandiose internet personage aside!---it seems to me to become more dangerous because it is establishing itself as a purveyer and distributor os essential spiritual truths. It declares, it denies, it decides. The danger is that this sort of grandiosiity can and has proceed toward a cultish trip. As I have said numerous times, I grew up around many manifestations of this kind. It is a big part of post-Sixties culture.
I can't go on. I'll go on.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby David Quinn » Mon Feb 20, 2012 9:39 am

Alex T. Jacob wrote:In this gambit, one move (pointing out grandiosity) is countered with an opportunistic attack against an element of my own discourse, that of Story. This functions nicely to deflect the critique, and is the 'move' that is performed frequently, such that it is fairly predictable.

Was I talking about you? Well, well, well, what delusions of grandeur we have. :)

I was actually refering to a much deeper truth, but anyway ....


If I answer the Story 'charge' the thrust will move in another direction. So, to avoid that, I think I will have to say that, to all appearances, you David 'operate' an enlightenment story about yourself. In your Story you have established for yourself this role.

This is a meaningless thing to say.

It is like saying that World War II and a person scratching an itch are identical and dismissable beause they are both "stories".

As I say, what is missing from your discourses is the logic/understanding side of things. It is continually stripped away and one of the ways you do this is by reducing everything to stories (thereby keeping everything mentally at a distance and out of harm's way).

You're not without energy and talent, Alex. If you actually rolled up your sleeves and and applied your thinking ability towards gaining a genuine understanding of things, making every effort to go through that narrow gate and open up to the Infinite, you would have something. Such an understanding, combined with your considerable erudition and talents as a writer, would be really powerful. You could really be a genius.

But alas, as it stands, nothing is happening. The logic/understanding side of things is perpetually avoided and endless reams of party puff pieces are produced.


The forum attracts and nurtures those who define a Story that incorporates these (I say) grandiose elements. Those captured by Grandiosity are blinded by it. This is all part and parcel of spiritual gamesmanship and is a significant chapter in post-Sixties alternative spirituality.

Or alternatively, they are being seized by the power of logic and the clarity and depth of understanding it produces.

But of course, this doesn't fit into your stories. The logic/understanding side of things is entirely stripped away and everyone becomes vacant dummies as a result. Harmless amorphous beings able to be easily shuffled around in fictitious plots.

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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby David Quinn » Mon Feb 20, 2012 10:25 am

Alex T. Jacob wrote: Enlightenment, the word, when you think about it, is really a very bad word. It does not have a definition. It cannot, in fact, have a definition because it means for each person, or for each school of thought, something different.

That can apply to any word.

I personally define enlightenment to be the absence of delusion. It doesn't matter to me how other people choose to define it. If they define it differently, then it shows that they are already being deluded from the outset.


Who can judge 'enlightenment'?

He who is without delusion.


A panel of authorities necessarily 'enlightened'?

One's own mind is enough.


Can the unenlightened even know, or judge, what it is or who has it?

Being deluded, the judgements made by the unenlightened are deluded.


Who defines? So, no, the cure is not 'enlightenment' but something akin to honesty and forthrightness.

"The cure is not being without delusion, but something akin to being without delusion."


Alex T. Jacob wrote:Any diagnostic is problematic, this is very true. But I do want to say that I mean grandiosity in a very specific sense, as in spiritual grandiosity, or having a grandiose sense of oneself as a messenger or Teacher, and especially as one who 'claims' a style of spirituality or a vision of the spiritual as the only way, or the superior way. At this point---grandiose prose or creation of a grandiose internet personage aside!---it seems to me to become more dangerous because it is establishing itself as a purveyer and distributor os essential spiritual truths. It declares, it denies, it decides. The danger is that this sort of grandiosiity can and has proceed toward a cultish trip. As I have said numerous times, I grew up around many manifestations of this kind. It is a big part of post-Sixties culture.

Ah, that thing with your parents again. You haven't quite been able to shake yourself from that particular story, have you .... :)

The point you try to make here is a very negative one. It basically states that no good can come out of thinking rationally and being without delusion. So no one should even try. This is a very disrespectful attitude towards the human mind.

The effects of a rational individual's life could go either way. It might well develop into a cult, or it could lead to the development of more rational individuals, or it could involve a bit of both. Even though I am repulsed by cults with every fibre of my being, it isn't enough of a concern to silence my voice. The pros outweigh the cons.

And let us never forget that the various cults of delusion that dominate this world (in politics, business and religion) have caused far more devastating consequences than a group of truthful individuals ever could.

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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Kunga » Mon Feb 20, 2012 11:11 am

Alex T. Jacob wrote:I only wish to say that I have developed a style of communication that avails me maximum freedom of expression with the minimum of constraints. It is true though: I tend to go after hypocricy. Why? you might well ask.


Everyone has their own style of communication. It takes 4 characters you have developed here (The Alexians), but where's the soft-hearted one ? Where's the pussy that purrrrrrrrrrs ?

When others reflect the hypocracy back to you...you are blinded by the light.

Alex T. Jacob wrote:You offer Answers that (I feel) you have not really worked through. They sound prefab to me.


Like what ? Believe me, I have worked through my own understanding of whatever answer I have given here.
I have searched, pondered,meditated,read, studied,lived life fully enough to know what I know.

I have no interest in studying other philosophers, Greek tragedies, or finding a Guru anymore.
My involvement with Buddhism and having a teacher is soley out of compassion.
I found the truth long before all that.
But it took a long time to finally realize it, as I didn't know it was that simple.
I was innocent and pure of heart when this realization came to me.
Then I went through the motions of living life without this realization,(distracted), except for having a boundless love for others.

My love is nothing like it use to be. My emotions are subsiding.
Everything is vibrating....what happens when vibration stops ?
It becomes indistinguishable.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Elizabeth Isabelle » Mon Feb 20, 2012 11:55 am

Cory Duchesne wrote: For me, the next few years will be mostly psychology and relationships.


Ditto here, but there is only so much that can be learned through the reading of thoughts and observations written by others. Granted we do not want to do a thing simply to learn more about it (for example, I spent a few years researching psychopathy and sociopathy, but neither became a psychopath nor a sociopath to learn those last few details, despite that I may have missed something by not doing so).

Cory Duchesne wrote:Some thoughts on the nature of Evil;

Wilful destructive acts, both to consciousness, human welfare and deliberate malice generally stem from an offended state of mind.

Some of the best psychologists, including Elliot Leyton (who offers some of the most insightful perspectives on sociopaths and serial killers) noted that the "criminal character" holds a deep seated grudge - a resentment. The difference between a profoundly evil person or merely an angry person like George Carlin, is that GC will go up on stage in the wide open and launch his assault in public. He let's you know how it is.

The thing about evil people is that they unleash all of their resentments secretly, passively. Months or years will go by before you realize the damage that a sociopath has done to you. His vengeance is private and obscure, partly due to a lack of courage, but also due to a lack of intelligence and human feeling.

The virtuous man has a grudge that is transparent, it's there for all to see. However, the supremely virtuous man has no pain, no offence.

A man who is offended is a corrupted human being - and his task is to convert his wound through mindful productivity.


Sociopaths and psychopaths only do things, however evil or apparently nice, for their own gain. Remarkably few are in prison for their crimes, and remarkably many have climbed the corporate ladder. They do not feel emotion the same way that an unafflicted human being does, and with that lack of emotion, they are able to use that advantage to notice the weak spots of others, and calculate how to use that to their advantage.

QRS is right in that emotion can blind one to logic. Psychopaths and sociopaths can be very logical insofar as getting to their selfish goal.

David Quinn wrote:The most evil thing in the world is, of course, logic.

Logic ruthlessly exposes everything that is false and cannot be swayed or bought. It expresses no fear, has no interest in human concerns, places no value on emotional sentiment. It is wholly concerned with the truth and doesn't care who it hurts. It is implacable.

By extension, the most evil kind of human being is the logical person. For within him logic is at its most concentrated, forcing people to confront their own fantasies and contradictions.

So this differs from Cory's conception of the evil person, who he depicts as a secretive, two-faced being who appears virtuous on the surface. The truly logical person doesn't even appear virtuous. Indeed, his evil is that he refuses to engage in any sort of machinations in the first place.

-


I'd say that logic is neither inherently good or evil. Logic is a tool that can be used for good or evil, but it is a good tool for either purpose it is assigned.

A difference between the wise sage and the evil psychopath is compassion. Compassion itself may only be a side effect of looking to the long term outcome rather than the shorter term. Psychopaths tend only to see the more immediate benefit to themselves, whereas a sage will look to the greater benefit of all of mankind over a longer period of time from generations to centuries. The longer term good tends to translate into compassion.

Cory Duchesne wrote: The ideal you refer to has (for a long time now) been my fuzzy ideal of a supremely good man - someone who doesn't think in terms of "supposed to be". His ideal is a lack of worldly idealism. His idealism is completely logical, devoid of worldly preferences. A man who get's duped or betrayed by someone, if he's honest, made some compromise on his own values. Because he violated himself, he left the door open for others to go even further in what is essentially exploitation. As for the value of "Story". I still think there is a social aspect to spirituality that involves win-win interactions. (such interactions are not as simple as they sound, as both sides often have to make a sacrifice in order for mutual benefit to occur). The value of story is there to help the person know what is emotionally and logically relevant to the "friend".

It's all about knowing how to treat people - and a story is helpful to know what it is they really need. A man who has not the patience or attention to learn another man's story is incapable of being a very effective teacher or true friend. This brings us back to the aesthetic. Doing anything for the sake of it, eating for the sake of eating, sex for the sake of sex, etc, will always lead to problems, from my understanding. Likewise, stories should not be told for the sake of story.


That does sound like the basis of social wisdom. The only additional quality needed to make that person a social sage would be to indeed know what the person actually needs. Even after listening to the person's story, differentiating between what they think that they need, what you think that they need, and what they actually need (and how to make the actual need palatable) is the defining step.


Alex T. Jacob wrote:Nicely put, Cory. I find these statements of yours sensible and useful. And if basis of misanthropy is self-hatred or hatred of life and even things like flesh & birth & body, what does that say about us? The First Order of Rishic (Vedic and hence Buddhist) awareness was of the horrors arrached to physical, embodied existence (pain and death essentially), and the establishment, practical or desperate, of alternatives, and if in our mental structures exist all those 'escape tricks', how do we reconcile this rather glaring problem?


The True story is not the story of our lives, but the story of Everything. In that story, there is no pain or suffering (as you already know) but that does not negate that in the individual story, pain can be great to the point of being unendurable. The escape tricks of jumping from one story to another do not diminish the reality of the little story nor negate the seemingly contradictory Story. It is not so much a paradox as a paradigm shift.

Cory Duchesne wrote: I think humanity, men and women, have serious jealousy/envy issues. While childish, grandiose fantasies can be a way of coping with one's envy/jealousy, just as often, small people like to knock down men with genuine virtues. I think that's partly the lesson of Greek tragedy - the Greek God's appear to have been inspired by real people with some super-human virtues, and with unusual abilities comes lop-sided relationships and strange tragedies. The challenge for humanity is dealing with inequality, and even loving inequality as part of life. In politics "the left", while having some unique virtues apart from the right, seems very soft when it comes to the reality of certain differences, and they are guilty of intellectual crimes that are unique to that class of psychology


Too true - but the challenge is, how do we get people to grow up when they do not want to grow up - or worse when they can not even see that they should grow up? The wisest we have had so far have said to not even try ("Do not cast pearls before swine" - etc.) but the world is so full of destructive, evil people that all hope seems lost.

Yes, for ourselves, retreating into solitude can help protect against the evil effects of the world, but evil will find its way in - and there are certain unfortunate things that happen to a human left in enough solitude for long enough. Enough time without stimulation actually seems to do more in allowing a person to process that which has already happened, and the trick is to find a way to do this without adding to things that must be processed later.


edited for spelling
Last edited by Elizabeth Isabelle on Mon Feb 20, 2012 1:21 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Alex T. Jacob » Mon Feb 20, 2012 12:09 pm

Hi Elizabeth, the part in the above, to me, I thought was very nicely put. That sort of statement is something one can put to use.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Elizabeth Isabelle » Mon Feb 20, 2012 12:10 pm

Thank you Alex.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Dennis Mahar » Mon Feb 20, 2012 12:36 pm

Nowadays, an ordinary/everyday working psychologist doesn't sit there for thousands and thousands of hours listening to a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury that signifies nothing...

Psychology takes its cue from Zen, it commandeers Zen, calls it Cognitive Behaviour Therapy.

You just got typecast.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby jupiviv » Mon Feb 20, 2012 1:01 pm

Diebert van Rhijn wrote:
jupiviv wrote:There is no conflict between positivism and nihilism.

You were phrasing them in opposite roles, not me. Don't turn your profound statement into an accident now!


I was talking about either of them being held as an inherent quality in all things. It is only then that a conflict arises between them.

Good means what is being desired while evil means what is being resisted. One "makes" good or bad, in the act, not in the thing. Role reversal happening all the time here.


If there are no inherently good or bad things, why should there be inherently good or bad acts? However, lies are still lies and hypocrisy is still hypocrisy, and the only reason a sage does not use them for his own good is because his defines "good" as being aware of reality.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Liberty Sea » Mon Feb 20, 2012 3:09 pm

What is good? That which is perfect.
What is evil? That which is imperfect.
Evil is not the opposite of good, as imperfection is not the opposite of perfection. The end of all imperfections is perfection.
"Be perfect, as your heavenly father is perfect!" - Jesus Christ. What is done by Nature that is not perfect? An earthquake? A great flood? They are perfectly perfect.
The perfectly logical man is therefore the perfectly good man, who is likely to be considered as evil by the world. If so: Be evil, as your heavenly father is evil.
-Posted by the greatest evil to be.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby David Quinn » Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:11 pm

Elizabeth Isabelle wrote:I'd say that logic is neither inherently good or evil. Logic is a tool that can be used for good or evil, but it is a good tool for either purpose it is assigned.

True, it isn't inherently evil. It only becomes evil when we are attached to fantasies and illogical beliefs (which we naturally consider to be "good"). This is why people constantly come up with all sorts of tricks to keep logic at bay, not that they are aware of this subterranean activity most of the time.

Truth always appears evil to the untruthful, which is why you can never believe in their goodness.


The True story is not the story of our lives, but the story of Everything. In that story, there is no pain or suffering (as you already know) but that does not negate that in the individual story, pain can be great to the point of being unendurable. The escape tricks of jumping from one story to another do not diminish the reality of the little story nor negate the seemingly contradictory Story.

Yes, plunging into stories is usually just escapism.


A difference between the wise sage and the evil psychopath is compassion. Compassion itself may only be a side effect of looking to the long term outcome rather than the shorter term. Psychopaths tend only to see the more immediate benefit to themselves, whereas a sage will look to the greater benefit of all of mankind over a longer period of time from generations to centuries. The longer term good tends to translate into compassion.

The trouble is, in a world in which most people are only ever thinking of their short-term future and their immediate happiness, the longer-term vision of a sage finds little traction. For the myopic, longer-term compassion is indistinguishable from anti-social recklessness.

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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby David Quinn » Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:21 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:What is good? That which is perfect.
What is evil? That which is imperfect.
Evil is not the opposite of good, as imperfection is not the opposite of perfection. The end of all imperfections is perfection.
"Be perfect, as your heavenly father is perfect!" - Jesus Christ. What is done by Nature that is not perfect? An earthquake? A great flood? They are perfectly perfect.
The perfectly logical man is therefore the perfectly good man, who is likely to be considered as evil by the world. If so: Be evil, as your heavenly father is evil.
-Posted by the greatest evil to be.

Yes, there is a reason why Kevin Solway called one of his compilations "Evil Wisdom". Admittedly, he can sometimes be a bit too verbose ....

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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:30 pm

From evil Wisdom:

"I would sooner have the man who sins a thousand mortal sins and knows it,
than him who sins but once in ignorance: that man is lost."

I remember reading this when I was younger and being a bit confused, but after what I've been through recently, it makes perfect sense. The most evil people are almost always convinced of their righteousness, having few doubts. It is the man who doubts himself and criticizes the morality of his actions, even before he makes them, that actually has a prayer.

There are only two kinds of men: the righteous who think they are sinners and the sinners who think they are righteous
(Blaise Pascal)
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:49 pm

Elizabeth Isabelle wrote:Too true - but the challenge is, how do we get people to grow up when they do not want to grow up - or worse when they can not even see that they should grow up? The wisest we have had so far have said to not even try ("Do not cast pearls before swine" - etc.) but the world is so full of destructive, evil people that all hope seems lost.


I'm experimenting a bit. Is it just me, or did a dozen of us or so trigger something on facebook? I know maybe it's superficial, but it seems I made an awful lot of connections very quickly, and having a newsfeed of inspiring memes everyday from people all over the world (and having actual conversations in public) has been good for me, and overall, I've gotten and given lots of support.

Other than that ... applying a "flame" to people at the right time has been interesting. Giving a bit of pain at the right time is part of my path. Idealism wounds, acceptance heals. The trick is knowing when to switch from one to another.

60
Ruling the country is like cooking a
small fish.
Approach the universe with Tao,
And evil is not powerful,
But its power will not be used to harm
others.
Not only will it do no harm to others,
But the sage himself will also be
protected.
They do not hurt each other,
And the Virtue in each one refreshes
both.



Finally... offer people the Tao, but make them understand how it's in their self interest. People do not want to submit. Each person wants to be the centre of the universe, so you have to frame wisdom in the context where such an ideal seems possible (it is possible).

Unfortunately, most people's idea of being in the centre of the universe is climbing into a position of "applause" from the group. The problem people have is their relation. They stubbornly refuse to accept themselves unconditionally, and so they seek to charm, to submit to some form, and hence, they wish to dominate, and get themselves into trouble.

Yes, I am complicit in this, but in a few years I likely won't be.

Elizabeth Isabelle wrote:Compassion itself may only be a side effect of looking to the long term outcome rather than the shorter term.


Very insightful. :) Nice to see you back.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Dennis Mahar » Mon Feb 20, 2012 6:11 pm

Unfortunately, most people's idea of being in the centre of the universe is climbing into a position of "applause" from the group. The problem people have is their relation. They stubbornly refuse to accept themselves unconditionally, and so they seek to charm, to submit to some form, and hence, they wish to dominate, and get themselves into trouble.

Yes, I am complicit in this, but in a few years I likely won't be.


You have imagined a possibility for Corey in the World:
a transpersonal way of being,
that's not self-centred.

it's 'lit up',
passionate,
vibrant,
vivacioius,
expressing authentically,
far reaching,
enrolling,
has self-esteem.

I'm not seeking to harm that possibility. It's a joy in a man.

I'm saying it came about thru' an orientation in the basics, a dependently related event.
Don't forget the basics.
'
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby jupiviv » Mon Feb 20, 2012 10:08 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:The perfectly logical man is therefore the perfectly good man, who is likely to be considered as evil by the world. If so: Be evil, as your heavenly father is evil.


But given your definition of "good" being that which is perfect, isn't the perfectly illogical man also the perfectly good man? :-)
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Elizabeth Isabelle » Tue Feb 21, 2012 4:58 am

David Quinn wrote: For the myopic, longer-term compassion is indistinguishable from anti-social recklessness.


Very true, and the reason that so many US protestors are getting maced, arrested, and the like - as but one set of obvious examples.


Cory Duchesne wrote:Finally... offer people the Tao, but make them understand how it's in their self interest. People do not want to submit. Each person wants to be the centre of the universe, so you have to frame wisdom in the context where such an ideal seems possible (it is possible).


Good advice.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Diebert van Rhijn » Tue Feb 21, 2012 6:38 am

jupiviv wrote:
Diebert van Rhijn wrote:
jupiviv wrote:There is no conflict between positivism and nihilism.

You were phrasing them in opposite roles, not me. Don't turn your profound statement into an accident now!


I was talking about either of them being held as an inherent quality in all things. It is only then that a conflict arises between them.


The conflict doesn't arise out of them but they themselves arise necessarily out of the conflict. Everything arises out of the conflict between affirmation and denial. Whenever something is positioned, a long wave of denial tends to follow its wake. It's interesting to interpret (the basic nihilism of) religion this way.

Good means what is being desired while evil means what is being resisted. One "makes" good or bad, in the act, not in the thing. Role reversal happening all the time here.


If there are no inherently good or bad things, why should there be inherently good or bad acts?

This only works when the act becomes first objectified as thing, as static event. But with a phrase like "act" my intention was to attract attention to actor (context, causes) and the inherent relativity which cannot be escaped or willed, only responded to properly.

However, lies are still lies and hypocrisy is still hypocrisy, and the only reason a sage does not use them for his own good is because his defines "good" as being aware of reality.


And yet other people might call the sage a liar and hypocrite because of that very act and the context. He might not care but only proves thereby his disregard for any consensual and contemporary morality. Which lies are then left for the sage to address anyway? Can he now know everyone's personal context? Even lies scream truth ultimately, just as loudly as anything else.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Diebert van Rhijn » Tue Feb 21, 2012 6:59 am

A message for my friend, the mule.

Alex T. Jacob wrote:Any diagnostic is problematic, this is very true. But I do want to say that I mean grandiosity in a very specific sense, as in spiritual grandiosity, or having a grandiose sense of oneself as a messenger or Teacher, and especially as one who 'claims' a style of spirituality or a vision of the spiritual as the only way, or the superior way. At this point---grandiose prose or creation of a grandiose internet personage aside!---it seems to me to become more dangerous because it is establishing itself as a purveyer and distributor os essential spiritual truths. It declares, it denies, it decides. The danger is that this sort of grandiosiity can and has proceed toward a cultish trip. As I have said numerous times, I grew up around many manifestations of this kind. It is a big part of post-Sixties culture.


As a matter of fact you've written about the dangers of these type of spirituality and more specifically the dynamics you witness as this forum and the ideas spun around here I think at least hundreds of times over the course of years. Which is fine and has been educative to some I'm sure. But since you still stick around, why not just select the few things which you've admitted to agree on and work with those? Becoming constructive, affirmative and individualistic. Now it appears at times almost every persona you play relies on opposition, warning, ridiculing while showing off the book knowledge. I believe your energy might work way better here by writing like you did - mostly in the earlier period - on women, Hinduism, masculinity, hermetism, perennial philosophy and so on. Solway and Quinn might have been limited, as you claim, "in range", but why not flesh out some of the core ideas in your own style here instead? And you might say you already did but I don't think you scratched the surface yet. It was just lazy work!

Really the world is so fucking large, such a melting pot of ideas and philosophies that any sustained opposition to any corner of it becomes sooner rather than later an act of insanity. But perhaps not irredeemable. Just refocus that energy for a while and see what can be accomplished when you piss with a storm behind you.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Tue Feb 21, 2012 7:19 am

Alex, Core Webworks welcomes you aboard this coming September. I run a promotional site for artists and philosophers, so yeah, take Diebert's advice and affirm the positive. There must be something you can commit to, but spending all of that energy opposing a single man or two is quite silly.

Admittedly, I've almost completed a short novel, and it involves a man in real life I consider an enemy, however, the truth is that who that man is is just my own creation. I drew a picture of him, and in the end, the demon I fight against is really myself, and that's the point of my story. The battles you fight against people... it's just your own shadow. When you compromise your own values, and people mirror your evil, you can't blame them for it. Because the moment you blame or cast stones, you have sunk to their level.

Get on board. Do something productive, and if you win, then we both win. As I say, I am looking to network and promote people who are doing something positive.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Alex T. Jacob » Tue Feb 21, 2012 7:50 am

I have mixed feeling, Diebert, about your 'recommendations'. Why would you bother? Cutting to the chase, I think you really should leave 'a person' (anyone) to work out their ideas as they need to. You have pretty much always taken this position and it seems you appoint yourself to this task. I also don't like the tone of what you wrote, as if my purpose is to display 'book learning'. It is snide but dressed up as some sort of friendly suggestion. It seems insincere too and perhaps even a little dishonest. If there is a purpose in sharing literature ('book learning'), it is because in the branch of Gnosticism I am drawn to, and perhaps practice, I am interested in forging a link to our traditions of literature. I have become especially eager in this area because it is the area that some voices around here reject, and quite adamantly. It would in this sense be quite difficult to divorce one whole area of my personal concern (nihilism in our present and the tendency to vacate both thinking and the recognition of value in lterary traditions) from that which I am trying to understand, to value.

Going further: you are not the one to bring 'recommendations', Diebert. I have seen you waver too much on issues I consider to be important. There are dozens of people who write here, and recently there have been quite a number of different conversational lines to get involved in. Do that. That is my 'recommendation' to you.
I can't go on. I'll go on.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Tue Feb 21, 2012 7:54 am

Alex, come on facebook and G+. We got some philosophy circles on there from people all around the world. We'll have a fun time.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Alex T. Jacob » Tue Feb 21, 2012 8:11 am

I am in a bit of a pickle, Cory. I don't want it to be perceived that I don't hear you, or understand you, or appreciate what I sense if basic good will on your part. I have written a few things here but find it just doesn't seem like the right place or time to respond. You also, in your way, have offered a recommendation and have revealed a perspective ('silliness', sinking to their level, casting stones, etc.) I don't think my concerns or issues are silly, I do not at all feel I have 'sunk' to anyone's level but my own (!), and I am not exactly 'casting stones'. I see words and ideas as, well, darts of sorts. One has to be very careful how one uses them I have learned. But there are 'darts' too that dissolve inside.

There is a possibility (when two posts get stacked up against each other or when one poster riffs off something another poster has written) that I have misunderstood you or am seeing your 'critique' as an extension of Diebert's. Let me know.

As to Facebooks and things like that, it really is not at all my domain or my interest. If my contributions (or 'contributions') here became universally (in a democratic sense) unwanted, I think I would just leave. I do not regret anything I have written. Not now, not recently or at any time. I only try to satisfy myself.

Y'all can vote, you know. I am not an unreasonable person...

Also, please don't feel you have to hold back, Cory. I mean, feel free to say exactly what you think of what I write, or the subjects I am drawn to. You may genuinely be 'opposed' to my thrust or my concerns.
I can't go on. I'll go on.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Tue Feb 21, 2012 8:37 am

Alex, I want to see you free yourself from the evil you created. To free yourself from these Tyrant's you invented. The forum can be whatever you want it to be, and you chose to make it a certain way.

Here's a good tune all about that:

Without Darkness

"Things are what we want them to be
Thoughts stem from the things we see"
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