The Nature of Evil

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

Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Dan Rowden » Fri Feb 24, 2012 12:10 pm

cousinbasil wrote:David, stop with your nonsense about logic being evil and therefore a man who embraces, and lives by, logic is an evil man. This is patronizing - the same way the common pronouncement by GF sages that love is the true source of man's suffering is patronizing.


If you substitute "attachment" for "love" you'll find the pronouncement is perfectly accurate. I'm not sure anyone has ever said, specifically, that love is the true source of man's suffering. Love is merely part of the set of attachments, albeit a very significant part.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby cousinbasil » Fri Feb 24, 2012 12:39 pm

DQ wrote:We can say that reigned-in logic - i.e. logic kept on a short leash, confined to tightly sealed compartments within the mind, reduced to the harmless and the academic - is neither good nor evil. It becomes evil, to our good selves, when it is unleashed and allowed to roam free.
I think I see the point you are making, but consider for a moment the way you are choosing to make it. Logic, reined in, is neither good nor evil. Unleashed, not reined in, it is evil. If logic can be either leashed or unleashed, it is correspondingly neither good nor evil, or else it is evil. Therefore, logic can never be good. So it has the potential for evil - but in the terms you would have it, not the potential for good.
It all depends on your standards, doesn't it......
Just so - which is why I am asking how something like logic, which in itself is but a tool, takes on the character of a weapon in your standards. In my standards, if even a weapon can be evil, then it must also be possible for it to be good!
If life really was the source of suffering, then we would be constantly suffering in every moment in our lives and there would be nothing we could do to alleviate it, short of killing ourselves.

No, when people suffer, it is because they deeply desire things to be other than what they are. That is to say, they are in love with what is not there.

True, but love is not the same thing as desire, is it? What if someone loves what is there? This is my whole point about these pronouncements you make! You know they are only true if viewed in a severely limited (you might argue targeted) way.

And I think I clarified that by saying life bound up in the mortal coil is cause of suffering. For then people require food, but may not have it; sex, but may never experience it; love, but may encounter geniuses who decree they must live without it.
If life really was the source of suffering, then we would be constantly suffering in every moment in our lives and there would be nothing we could do to alleviate it, short of killing ourselves.
Unless life was also the source of joy and love and everything else?
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Liberty Sea » Fri Feb 24, 2012 12:42 pm

cousinbasil wrote:Reminds me of the preacher whose sermon was about God's perfection. He bellowed from the pulpit: "Everything God made is perfect!" Way in the rear of the congregation, a man with a hunched back interrupted loudly, "What about me?" Not missing a beat, the preacher thundered, "Why, you're the most perfect hunchback I've ever seen!"

I think that Jesus's statement pretty much covered my point: "Whoever believes that the All is deficient is himself completely deficient." This appears like a paradox, because he is part of the All and yet he is deficient while the All is not. But in fact we can see clearly that the problem lies in the deficiency of his awareness, his inability to see himself as an inseparable part of the All, which too is the will of the All. The problem is solved if he can broaden his perspective to the All. And see that everything is inevitable, that he is this precise movement of the All.
This funnily reminds me of a passage from Henry Miller's Tropic of Capricorn:
“I have reached the limits of endurance. My back is to the wall; I can retreat no further. As far as history goes I am dead. If there is something beyond I shall have to bounce back. I have found God, but he is insufficient. I am only spiritually dead. Physically I am alive. Morally I am free. The world which I have departed is a menagerie. The dawn is breaking on a new world, a jungle world in which lean spirits roam with sharp claws. If a am a hyena I am a lean and hungry one: I go forth to fatten myself.”

However, this passage from Dostoevsky's The Possessed speaks it to the point:
"I'm not speaking of an allegory, but of a leaf, only a leaf. The leaf is good. Everything's good.”
“Everything?”
“Everything. Man is unhappy because he doesn't know he's happy. It's only that. That's all, that's all! If anyone finds out he'll become happy at once, that minute. That mother-in-law will die; but the baby will remain. It's all good. I discovered it all of a sudden.”
“And if anyone dies of hunger, and if anyone violates a little girl, is that good?”
“Yes! And if anyone blows his brains out for the little girl, that's good too. And if anyone doesn't, that's good too. It's all good, all. It's good for all those who know that it's all good. If they knew that it was good for them, it would be good for them, but as long as they don't know it's good for them, it will be bad for them. That's the whole idea, the whole of it.”

Awareness is the key point.
Like in Math, 2 is an inevitable result of 1+1, everything that is happening is an inevitable result of what happened in the past. Is not perfection an inevitability? The perfect man has the eyes to see the inevitability in all thing happening to him and makes his decisions as inevitable decisions, even more decisive than either/or.

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jupiviv wrote:

I myself am the boundary of everything else, and everything else except me is the boundary of me.

Me + everything else = everything.

Or, duality = non-duality.

jupiviv wrote: So then the "you" is not an illusion at all, since it never appears as anything but a "breath of nature" etc. And the waking up is not real, because there is nothing else that is not a "breath of nature".


The "you" or the "I" or the "self" is still an 'illusion', by which I mean 'as real as a dream', precisely because everything is a breath of nature. For example, the wind in Vietnam here, and a wind in Australia, they are both breath of Nature. They seem separated, but they are in fact interconnected, in fact One as the atmosphere of the Earth.

Furthermore, this breath of Nature has breathing from beginning-less time. So when exactly did the 'you' come into existence? I am using a very classic argument that I suppose you already know, but let me repeat it nonetheless. There is no definite point in time that determines 'your' birth. Atoms conforms into 'you' and then deconform, always inseparable from the All, like a wind inseparable from the air.

Let not forget that the lifespan of a quark is less than a millionth of a second, so 'you' in second is entirely different from "you" in the next moment.
We have been talking 'you', but in fact we are just talking about 'yours', like 'your' body, 'your' brain, 'your' consciousness, not the 'self' that resides in all these 'yours'. But 'your' consciousness is a process of the All, 'your' arm is part of the All, as everything belongs to the All and not 'you'. So when you broaden and enhance your awareness to become One with the All, instead of limiting it within the boundary of 'your' non-inherently existent body, then 'my' arm is 'your' arm, 'my' movement is 'your' movement, because 'you' are the All.

To conclude, 'you' as a separated entity exists, but not inherently. (point 1. For fortification, see point 3.)
jupiviv wrote:
But what about this brain? It is clearly a form, and if it is a form then there are other forms that are not it, and hence beyond it. So clearly this view is mistaken.


You cannot see your brain. Suppose you can see it through an X-ray scanner or something, and there you see a shape, a definite shape. But imagine a giant to whom your brain look like a smooth bean-shaped grain of salt. And another giant to whom a century of our time pass in a second, then your brain is like a tiny drop a water rapidly vapor into think air. The shapes and forms of your brain that they perceive are different from the shape and form you perceive. So which shape, which form is the true shape, true form of your brain? We can broaden the perspective by imaging a giant to whom your brain is as small as a quark.

As we equate the brain with the mind, or consciousness, let us not forget that the mind in this moment is entirely different from the mind in the next moment, like a flame.
I am not supporting solipsism, or nihilism, the view that nothing exists. My view is similar to Nagarjuna, that (contrary to nihilism) there does exist a world of non-inherent selves and appearance (the phenomenal world). The food of you eat is obviously, though not inherently, existent because they are necessary to preserve your visual perception, your construct of shape and form of the world. The lack of them makes your vision blur, your brain works weakly. But, contrary to essentialism, all such phenomenal entities are impermanent, continually changing, interdependent, insubstantial — in other words, "empty" (shunya) of essence.

To conclude, the brain exists, but not inherently. (point 2. For fortification, see point 3.)
jupiviv wrote:
If it possesses inherent selfhood then it must also possess inherent non-selfhood for that precise reason. There is no other thing apart from the All, hence its selfhood is caused entirely by itself. But since there is no other thing except the All, its selfhood doesn't really exist, for there is nothing to contrast it with.


This is an interesting point, but we must examine it carefully, logically. Its selfhood is caused by itself means it is self-existent. We agree that it doesn't need a contrast to support this self-existence, this inherent existence, so how is it logical to say it is non-existent?

Inherent existence or inherent selfhood is the same thing. I argue that the view A: "The All's existence/selfhood is inherent" is the only true view. And the view B: "The All's non-existence/non-selfhood is inherent" is false, is nihilism and contradicts A. B negates A, not a logical deduction from A. The argument is as follow:

I.) Let me quote Aristotle on logic: "A statement and its negation cannot both be true at the same time".
Suppose this is true and apply this principle on the existence of things, we have:
I.1) A thing either exists or doesn't exist at all.
To illustrate it in points:
A: "X exists" = "X has existence of some kind".
The negation of A would be:
B: "X doesn't exist at all" = "X's non-existence is inherent."
Either A is true and B is false or A is false and B is true. There is no third case.
If B is true, the process ends there. If A is true, we move to the next step.

If a thing exists, then the case is either:
I.1.1) It exists inherently.
I.1.2) It exists, but not inherently.
To illustrate in points:
C: X's existence is inherent.
The negation of C would be:
D: X's existence is not inherent.
Either C is true and D is false or C is false and D is true. There is no third case.
If C is true, the process end there. For C to be true X must be uncaused and therefore self-existent. If D is true, we move to the next point.

I.1.2.1) [It exists but not inherently] --> (the fact that it exists in some way means its non-existence is not inherent).
To illustrate in points:
Z: X's existence is not inherent because X is caused and dependent (see point 1 and 2), therefore X must also interact and contribute causes. Therefore X's non-existence is not inherent.

II.) Now to quote Nagarjuna's statements:
"To say 'it is' is to grasp for permanence. (E)
To say 'it is not' is to adopt the view of nihilism (F)
Therefore a wiseman doesn't say 'it is' or 'it is not' ".
His use of words caused confusion and make his statements seem to contradict principle of logic, but in fact they are in perfection accordance with logic as illustrated above. And let me paraphrase him:
E: The view "X's existence is inherent" is false because X is not permanent.
F: The view "X's non-existence is inherent" is false because such view is nihilism.

F negates B and therefore makes A true (see I.1). We process, E negates C and therefore makes D true. (see I.1.2)
E and D apply to the existence of thing as impermanet, caused, separated entities.
C applies to the All because the All is permanent, uncaused and therefore inherent.
To conclude, things as separated entities exist, but not inherently. The All exists inherently / The All's existence is inherent. The view that the All's non-existence is inherent / The All is non-existent is nihilism. (point 3. For fortification, see below.)

III.) Before we verify the nature of Nagarjuna's statement we must examine our tools: logic and grammar.

a.) When the adverb "inherently" is put into the wrong place in the sentence, it will cause confusion. To avoid confusion, we must agree on the grammar rule (z): If two sentence are identical except for the position of the abverd (before or after the main verb), they have two different meanings.
For example:
-"I really don't know about it" means "I don't know about it at all." or "My ignorance of it is absolute".
-"I don't really know about it" means "I know something about it, but not all about it." or "my knowledge about it is not absolute".
Thus:
-"X inherently does not exist" (z1) means X doesn't exist at all = X's non-existence is inherent.
-"X does not inherently exist" (z2) means X exists but not inherently = X's existence is not inherent.

b.) Grant this rule (z) as true grammar, we process to examine these four cases to sweep away all grammatical and logical confusion:
A: "X is inherently existent." = "X does exist." = "X inherently does exist." = "X has inherence existence" = "X's existence is inherent."
B: "X is inherently non-existent." = "X does not exist at all." = "X inherently does not exist." (z1) = "X has inherent non-existence." = "X's non-existence is inherent."
---
C: "X is not inherenly existent." = "X does not exist inherently." = "X does not inherently exist." (z2) = "X has no inherent existence." = "X's existence is not inherent."
D: "X is not inherently non-existen.t" = "X does not not exist inherently."= " X does not inherently not exist." = "X has no inherence non-existence." = "X's non-existence is not inherent."
From the conclusion of I) and II.a), we can see clearly that B is a negation of A. While D is logical deduction from C and therefore affirms C.

c.) With all established knowledge we can be back to examining Nagarjuna's statements:

We have E: "X's existence is not inherent because X is not permanent". The negation of E would be E0: "X's existence is inherent because X is not permanent". But the statement E1: "X's non-existence is not inherent because X is not permanent" is not a negation of E, but rather a logical deduction from E, and affirms E. [ see I.1.2 and I.1.2.1 ]-> If E is true then E0 is false and E1 is true.
Therefore we have H: "The All's existence is inherent because the All is permanent". The negation of H would be H0: "The All's non-existence is inherent because the All is permanent." We have agreed H as true, therefor H0 is false, is nihilism. [ see I.1 and I.1.1 and II ].


That is from a logical perspective. From a visual practical perspective, we are part of the All. We perceive its existence from inside it and not outside it, as a part of it and not separated from it, as the observer that is also the observed. This is different from the inability to perceive a quark without the void surrounding it, because we perceive the quark as an observer separated from the quark. (point 4)

jupiviv wrote:

They are also not non-inherent, for that which is said to lack inherent separation and non-separation is itself lacking inherent existence. Since it is not inherently existent, there is no inherent quality that it inherently lacks.


This seems like an abuse of words. While we agree on the point that ["it lacks inherent existence" or "it is not inherently existent)] (A), this does not lead to the conclusion that ["it is also not non-inherent"] (A'), but the logical deduction would lead to the conclusion that ["it also lacks inherent non-existence" or "it is also not inherently non-existent."] (B).

The confusion arises from your twist with the word 'inherent' and wrong step of logic.
Last edited by Liberty Sea on Fri Feb 24, 2012 7:04 pm, edited 9 times in total.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Fri Feb 24, 2012 2:40 pm

David Quinn wrote:
cousinbasil wrote:
If I get Cory right, there is a measure of duplicity in evil, and I must agree with that.


From the ego's point of view, there is indeed a degree of duplicity in logic. A person is initially attracted to logic because it empowers him. He feels stronger and more powerful when his logic overturns society's myths and the falsehoods of his own upbringing. But a point is soon reached when it all turns back on him and suddenly he finds himself being disempowered by the beast he has unleashed. He becomes devoured by his own logic.

Kierkegaard writes:

    "Anyone who has the remotest idea of what it actually is to die to the world also knows that this does not take place without frightful agonies. No wonder, then, that he cries out, sometimes also rebels against God, because it seems to him as if God has deceived him, he who from the beginning became involved with God on the understanding that God would love him according to man's idea of love and now sees that it is God who wants to be loved, and according to God's idea of what love is."


I will add that there are two types of duplicity. There is the duplicity of a man who intentionally wants to pull you (and himself) away from God, and then there is the duplicity of God.

If you're serious about your spirituality, you already know the enemy is God, and so the duplicity of an enemy will eventually fill you with gratitude. The longer it takes to convert resentment into gratitude, the poorer your spirit. Some people never let go of a grudge, and these people are not serious about reality. They're either cut from the wrong cloth, or they just never had the external causal influences required to open up their mind and heart.

Evil is an attitude - it is the stubborn refusal to accept things how they are. Logic helps us diffuse resentment, anger and despair. A good heart is simply an incidental gift. It is the quality of heart that separates a good monk from a superstar.

"All striving of a more noble character always meets with opposition. If you hold only to God, the attack and contempt and the storm of opposition will help you discover things you otherwise would never discover; they will add new strings to your lyre. Every person is like an instrument which no doubt can be disturbed and damaged by the world's wretchedness, but if you hold on to God, it can help you to an ever new melody." (Kierkegaard)
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby cousinbasil » Fri Feb 24, 2012 9:49 pm

Cory wrote:I will add that there are two types of duplicity. There is the duplicity of a man who intentionally wants to pull you (and himself) away from God, and then there is the duplicity of God.

If you're serious about your spirituality, you already know the enemy is God

I would argue that I am serious about my spirituality (at least more serious than any one else is about my spirituality!) Let's say that I do not regard God as the enemy. Here you are telling me that God is the enemy, and you are going to talk about his duplicity. Why should I not regard you as a man who wants to pull me away from God, and therefore by your own reasoning, a duplicitous - thus evil - person?

I will say it again - at least I feel as if I have repeated this often: God cannot be the enemy, nor can he be duplicitous. These are characterizations of humans. Holding on to God (in the Kierkegaardian sense) is explicitly not to hold on to a particular human or humans, or even to any quality or qualities of humanity, for doing so exposes one further to the "world's wretchedness."

Evil is an attitude - it is the stubborn refusal to accept things how they are. Logic helps us diffuse resentment, anger and despair.
If evil is an attitude, it must be in a class by itself, because other kinds of attitude are susceptible to "adjustments." A single act can be evil, yet the person who committed it not an evil person. A person truly committed to evil has gone beyond and might be called "iniquitous."

I look at it this way - most attitudes are the product of ignorance. Yet the evil person is never altogether ignorant, since he is quick to identify and exploit the failings and weaknesses of others.
A good heart is simply an incidental gift. It is the quality of heart that separates a good monk from a superstar.
Well, finding a good heart can seem like an incidental gift. Even so, we are prepared to "Cross the ocean for a heart of gold." Having one, on the other hand, takes work. Has the lowliest monk not exerted more spiritual effort than the most famous superstar...?
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby jupiviv » Fri Feb 24, 2012 11:17 pm

Liberty Sea wrote:The "you" or the "I" or the "self" is still an 'illusion', by which I mean 'as real as a dream', precisely because everything is a breath of nature.


If all things are illusions, then they are real for precisely that reason. There can't be anything real that all things are hiding from your sight.

Furthermore, this breath of Nature has breathing from beginning-less time. So when exactly did the 'you' come into existence?


Well, any finite thing(which is what you presumably mean by "breath of Nature?) has a beginning and end in time. However, the whole of existence has no beginning or end in time, because time itself is merely a part of it. Ultimately, both the birth and death of a thing lies in everything else except that thing.

As we equate the brain with the mind, or consciousness, let us not forget that the mind in this moment is entirely different from the mind in the next moment, like a flame.


That's right. My point was that there is a world that is beyond the brain or the mind.

I argue that the view A: "The All's existence/selfhood is inherent" is the only true view. And the view B: "The All's non-existence/non-selfhood is inherent" is false, is nihilism and contradicts A.


These two statements don't contradict each other because they are not made about a thing. If I said "the All has neither inherent selfhood nor inherent non-selfhood", I would still be right. How can one contradict oneself in the face of God?

We perceive its existence from inside it and not outside it, as a part of it and not separated from it, as the observer that is also the observed


We can't be aware of the All, but neither can we be unaware of it.

Let me analyse the Nagarjuna quote:

"Nothing whatever arises.


What does "arise" mean here? I would say it means "be something other than itself", for delusions are the result of expecting things to be a certain way, and not any other.

Not from itself,


Referring to inherent existence. If inherent existence is posited as a quality of a thing, then it is not the same as the thing.

not from another,


Referring to inherent nonexistence. Same as above.

not from both itself and another,


I.e both inherent existence and inherent nonexistence. If both are posited as being qualities of a thing, they would still not be identical to the thing.

and not without a cause."


Neither inherent existence nor inherent nonexistence nor both nor neither are in and of themselves the cause of a thing.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Sat Feb 25, 2012 9:05 am

cousinbasil wrote:
Cory wrote:I will add that there are two types of duplicity. There is the duplicity of a man who intentionally wants to pull you (and himself) away from God, and then there is the duplicity of God.

If you're serious about your spirituality, you already know the enemy is God


I would argue that I am serious about my spirituality (at least more serious than any one else is about my spirituality!) Let's say that I do not regard God as the enemy. Here you are telling me that God is the enemy, and you are going to talk about his duplicity. Why should I not regard you as a man who wants to pull me away from God, and therefore by your own reasoning, a duplicitous - thus evil - person?


You and I would first have to have a conversation on the nature of reality, otherwise, arguing about whether or not the enemy should be regarded as God would be meaningless. There are too many other basic things to become clear on.

I will say it again - at least I feel as if I have repeated this often: God cannot be the enemy, nor can he be duplicitous. These are characterizations of humans. Holding on to God (in the Kierkegaardian sense) is explicitly not to hold on to a particular human or humans, or even to any quality or qualities of humanity, for doing so exposes one further to the "world's wretchedness."


What I meant was that duplicitous humans are part of God. They are a single thread in the overall tapestry of God. Resentment fills a man only when he wants something from others. A man who is truly at one with God wants nothing, and he does God's will.

Evil is an attitude - it is the stubborn refusal to accept things how they are. Logic helps us diffuse resentment, anger and despair.
If evil is an attitude, it must be in a class by itself, because other kinds of attitude are susceptible to "adjustments." A single act can be evil, yet the person who committed it not an evil person. A person truly committed to evil has gone beyond and might be called "iniquitous."

I look at it this way - most attitudes are the product of ignorance. Yet the evil person is never altogether ignorant, since he is quick to identify and exploit the failings and weaknesses of others.


He exploits others hoping he will reap advantage in the long term, ignorant of how little he truly knows. Such men are disciples of chance. They base their actions on a bit of knowledge, but when they act, they hope it doesn't fail them. They live in a state of hope, denial, desperation and chance. The criminal is in denial of reason and hates life.

A good heart is simply an incidental gift. It is the quality of heart that separates a good monk from a superstar.
Well, finding a good heart can seem like an incidental gift. Even so, we are prepared to "Cross the ocean for a heart of gold." Having one, on the other hand, takes work. Has the lowliest monk not exerted more spiritual effort than the most famous superstar...?


By superstar, I don't mean famous. The monk has a particular character - bitter, envious, disagreeable, anti-social, obsessive with worldly things... yet his goodness is in his diligent self denial and practice. A superstar has a great love for life, and carefully conceals himself in order not to arouse the envy and fear of the surrounding monks. One must be considerate to those who struggle with the basics. The challenge before humanity is love - the task demands courage and love and such traits are largely inborn. I do believe the "transcendental method" as well as very prudent romantic relationships can increase courage and love in people who otherwise have very little of it.

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”
― Lao Tzu
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby cousinbasil » Sat Feb 25, 2012 10:14 am

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”
― Lao Tzu

I had not heard that one. Thanks for that.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby David Quinn » Sat Feb 25, 2012 10:27 am

Where does this quote come from, Cory? It's not in the Tao Te Ching, as far as I'm aware. I have noticed it doing the rounds in Valentine Day gift cards, though ....

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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Sat Feb 25, 2012 10:45 am

It's attributed to him from a quotations site.

Good reads

This is an empirical issue, but I see lots of evidence and logic behind, for instance consider the passion at which Kierkegaard lived his life. Every philosopher should have that one love that acts as his charge. I've heard you say something similar years ago.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Dan Rowden » Sat Feb 25, 2012 10:58 am

On the subject of that quote: http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/?p=2291
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Bobo » Sat Feb 25, 2012 11:08 am

Isn't the transcedental method related to Kant (from Weininger's quote)?
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby David Quinn » Sat Feb 25, 2012 11:11 am

cousinbasil wrote:
DQ wrote:We can say that reigned-in logic - i.e. logic kept on a short leash, confined to tightly sealed compartments within the mind, reduced to the harmless and the academic - is neither good nor evil. It becomes evil, to our good selves, when it is unleashed and allowed to roam free.
I think I see the point you are making, but consider for a moment the way you are choosing to make it. Logic, reined in, is neither good nor evil. Unleashed, not reined in, it is evil. If logic can be either leashed or unleashed, it is correspondingly neither good nor evil, or else it is evil. Therefore, logic can never be good. So it has the potential for evil - but in the terms you would have it, not the potential for good.

Good and evil is a matter of perspective. From a spiritual perspective - which, as you have picked up, is not the perspective I have been using in this thread - unleashed logic is a good thing as it means the end of delusion, enabling God to realize His own nature (which is the greatest of all things).

Our egos, however, are never quite so eager to embrace this perspective. Indeed, most people can't get past their initial revulsion to even contemplate it.

"Whoso has three things is beloved of God. The first is riddance of goods; the second, of friends, and the third is riddance of self", says the revolting Meister Eckhart.


cousinbasil wrote:
If life really was the source of suffering, then we would be constantly suffering in every moment in our lives and there would be nothing we could do to alleviate it, short of killing ourselves.

Unless life was also the source of joy and love and everything else?

Okay, you are referring to "life" here in the larger sense to mean Nature itself. Yes, Nature is the source of all things, including suffering. But in the practical context of eliminating suffering from our lives, we need to determine the specific factors within Nature that cause suffering - which, at root, is love (attachment).


cousinbasil wrote:
No, when people suffer, it is because they deeply desire things to be other than what they are. That is to say, they are in love with what is not there.

True, but love is not the same thing as desire, is it? What if someone loves what is there?

If a person is able to love what is there at all times, no matter what the circumstances, then he goes beyond attachment and suffering.

This kind of love, however, is completely unlike love as people commonly conceive of it, since it involves neither desire nor emotion. It is too pure to be called love.

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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Sat Feb 25, 2012 11:12 am

Guys, irrespective to scholarship issues, I'm not talking about getting cozy in the domestic hells or any valentines day stuff. If you have an issue with the meaning behind what I'm saying (while I can respect your need for tidiness in scholarship), I invite you to a meaningful dialogue or debate in the crucible. This is about loving women like your daughters, actually seeing their terrible condition, and how much they suffer when faced with any honest look at life.

My ideal society is organized like the Greeks and Eastern Traditions, woman in a secondary role, but not necessarily in marital duty. Maybe a man might have 2 or 3 romances in his life, but he does it with all his heart, to refine his ability has a psychologist and fathom the depth of the suffering both men and women are under.

Too much reasoning on internet forums is almost like academia, there's no first hand knowledge of life, no direct confrontation of fear or test of character.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Elizabeth Isabelle » Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:33 pm

Cory Duchesne wrote:Too much reasoning on internet forums is almost like academia, there's no first hand knowledge of life, no direct confrontation of fear or test of character.


Indeed it is easier to be a buddha in a monastery than on the streets. There is a line of what life conditions even allow buddhahood to exist, but I believe that it is a measure of the quality of a person's spiritual development to exhibit qualities like the Buddha in conditions more adverse to a buddha-state.

What you propose sounds like building a form of spiritual muscle.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Dennis Mahar » Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:36 pm

Practically,
it's not love per se.

it's the idea of love that sweeps you away.
the alluring promise of the possibility it may hold...

ITS THE IDEA!
geddit?

this object you invest in, reify as having absolute existence,
this idol you gaze at across the kitchen table adoringly,


lacks inherent existence,
lacks permanence,
moon in water,
appearance.

Who's kidding who?
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:51 pm

Elizabeth Isabelle wrote:
Cory Duchesne wrote:Too much reasoning on internet forums is almost like academia, there's no first hand knowledge of life, no direct confrontation of fear or test of character.


Indeed it is easier to be a buddha in a monastery than on the streets. There is a line of what life conditions even allow buddhahood to exist, but I believe that it is a measure of the quality of a person's spiritual development to exhibit qualities like the Buddha in conditions more adverse to a buddha-state.

What you propose sounds like building a form of spiritual muscle.


The heart is a muscle, and if you don't use it, you grow cowardly, cruel and bitter. As I said before, I felt physical sensations in my chest area; warm, tingling and expanding - and this was not during the romance when everything was roses and humour, quite the contrary. It was a response to seeing the thorns, brutality and ugliness of love. You have to go beyond the theoretical and dive right in. A man who does not do that is either a control freak, or b) he just does not have the karma for it. His job is simple monk.

Dealing with the chaos of people with good nature, insight, compassion and good humour is not easy, and to think you can just drop out of life completely does not develop a whole personality that can flow, accept and heal people just as easily as be idealistic with them.

I see subjects like psychology, personality development and endocrinology as indirect issues, but that does not mean they are not less valuable. In fact, if your goal is to honour the direct aspect of existence, then by honouring the indirect (properly) you are only helping your cause.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Sat Feb 25, 2012 12:56 pm

Dennis Mahar wrote:Practically,
it's not love per se.

it's the idea of love that sweeps you away.


Once again, you've allowed yourself to believe in some idea of what you think I am, and have proceeded to offer something that's mostly irrelevant to the conversation at hand, which has been your tendency. You and Jup are very similar. Incapable of a human conversation - just interruptions of conversations, based on a shallow projection of your own psychology.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Dennis Mahar » Sat Feb 25, 2012 2:49 pm

The human conversation concerning romance has been engaged for millenia.
It's found to be of the substance 'idea' based on a few fuzzy, wuzzy tinglings that last a short time.
Then it becomes a case of commitment.
Like a pair of train carraiges coupled together, running along a single track.
choof choof..
tickets please...

heavy going, rough terrain.

He and She become We.

entangled.

Story of We.
emotional baggage.
hold each other to ransom.
Last edited by Dennis Mahar on Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby David Quinn » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:01 pm

Dennis Mahar wrote:He and She become We.

He and She become She.

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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Dennis Mahar » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:05 pm

He and She become She.


History is Herstory.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby jupiviv » Sat Feb 25, 2012 4:01 pm

Cory Duchesne wrote:The heart is a muscle, and if you don't use it, you grow cowardly, cruel and bitter. As I said before, I felt physical sensations in my chest area; warm, tingling and expanding - and this was not during the romance when everything was roses and humour, quite the contrary. It was a response to seeing the thorns, brutality and ugliness of love. You have to go beyond the theoretical and dive right in. A man who does not do that is either a control freak, or b) he just does not have the karma for it. His job is simple monk.


I don't understand this "simple monk" category of yours. Does it refer to everyone who thinks that your description of spirituality is wrong? Were Hakuin or the Buddha 'simple monks' because they didn't, like Kierkegaard, have an affair and then break it up? Does that make them inferior to Kierkegaard?

It is amusing to see how you talk about being one with God, and then create weird psychological categories where you lump the people whom you don't like, or simply denigrate them. I see that in one of your latest posts you took a swipe at me along with Dennis, even though I had nothing to do with that discussion. Was that because you had a warm, tingling sensation in your heart?

From Kierkegaard's 'Works of love':

Alas, we talk about finding the perfect person in order to love him. Christianity teaches us that the perfect person is the one who limitlessly loves the person he sees. We humans always look upward for the perfect object, but in Christ love looks down to earth and loves the person it sees. If then, you wish to become perfect in love, strive to love the person you see, just as you see him, with all his imperfections and weaknesses. Love him as you see him when he is utterly changed, when he no longer loves you, when he perhaps turns indifferently away or turns to love someone else. Love him as you see him when he betrays and denies you. Love the person you see and see the person you love.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Sat Feb 25, 2012 4:03 pm

He and She become She.

History is Herstory.


Obviously if you devote yourself to her ego, then you become her, and it becomes herstory, rather than history. Clearly I'm not doing that, but rather, I am showing a very practical function that women can play. They give men a certain jolt of electricity to ascend as Ubermensch.

If you frame it to women in these terms, they will be none too happy, but these are the facts. I see a fraternity of unmarried men reigning above hell, and every once in a while, especially in his youth, a single man will dive down into the Dionysian, and it's like getting pearls, and his mates help him back up, out of the hells.

Every once in a while you might lose a guy to the hells, but the point is to go down and get pearls, returning with new strength and insight.

Historically, men have been "used" by women to support women and men have hardly complained.

With improved infrastructure, less physical labour will be required, and the creative class of Ubsermensch will have a new relationship to woman. Women will be used, but it will be in the name of God.

If you guys can't smile and laugh at this idea of spiritual fraternity, you are utter eunuchs yourselves! This is a great way for a proper upbringing, something a grandfather can coach his son into.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Cory Duchesne » Sat Feb 25, 2012 4:37 pm

jupiviv wrote:
Cory Duchesne wrote:The heart is a muscle, and if you don't use it, you grow cowardly, cruel and bitter. As I said before, I felt physical sensations in my chest area; warm, tingling and expanding - and this was not during the romance when everything was roses and humour, quite the contrary. It was a response to seeing the thorns, brutality and ugliness of love. You have to go beyond the theoretical and dive right in. A man who does not do that is either a control freak, or b) he just does not have the karma for it. His job is simple monk.


I don't understand this "simple monk" category of yours. Does it refer to everyone who thinks that your description of spirituality is wrong? Were Hakuin or the Buddha 'simple monks' because they didn't, like Kierkegaard, have an affair and then break it up? Does that make them inferior to Kierkegaard?

It is amusing to see how you talk about being one with God, and then create weird psychological categories where you lump the people whom you don't like, or simply denigrate them. I see that in one of your latest posts you took a swipe at me along with Dennis, even though I had nothing to do with that discussion. Was that because you had a warm, tingling sensation in your heart?

From Kierkegaard's 'Works of love':

Alas, we talk about finding the perfect person in order to love him. Christianity teaches us that the perfect person is the one who limitlessly loves the person he sees. We humans always look upward for the perfect object, but in Christ love looks down to earth and loves the person it sees. If then, you wish to become perfect in love, strive to love the person you see, just as you see him, with all his imperfections and weaknesses. Love him as you see him when he is utterly changed, when he no longer loves you, when he perhaps turns indifferently away or turns to love someone else. Love him as you see him when he betrays and denies you. Love the person you see and see the person you love.


I think that as a coach, you can't treat all players the same, and you have to be rougher with some players than others, and you and Dennis are no exception. I think GF creates an environment that needs correction. Many of you show little to no interest in the aesthetic side of life, when in my view, the aesthetic is fine, and even functional as long as you have a firmly rooted relationship to the ethical and religious. I also question the depth of your insight into psychology and personality development, I see very black and white thinking with you guys in areas that are not black and white, yet, are valuable.

There's a certain "be more like me" attitude that permeates this entire world and I see this as being in complete opposition to reality.

My ideal is to stop being idealistic about stupid things (like trying to force everyone into what is essentially your own worldly, aesthetic ideal). Humans are here to function with each other like organs in a body function. This requires sociological thinking, and if you are decidedly asocial, then just stay out of it. While one Sage might find stimulation pulling his monks out into the edge of thought without any interest in function, another Sage might make his ideas useful to those who enjoy working or being socially involved in a team atmosphere.

About comparing those different spiritual icons... look, that's another issue; you guys like to rank and compare things. Criticizing past figures is fine if you're trying to find your own styles, but at the end of the day, these guys all compliment and contrast each other, they work as a team. And yes, some spiritual icons shine brighter than others at certain things. It's like stars in the sky, some are bright, some are dim. Do you guys look up at the stars and night and start arguing about stars?

Where Kierkegaard might be too effeminate and subtle, Hakuin is more blockheaded and direct. Both are useful when paired together, but when you start arguing over who is right and wrong, you lose the whole point.

If these paragraphs aren't love expressed to you, Jup, I don't know what is. I give you my time and energy, 100%. All I ask is you do the same, no half assed narcissitic devaluations over the internet. You devalue me, and I devalue you. If you catch me in obvious errors point them out, but I know the game. I had Kelly Jones do it the worst... creating errors in my writing just for the sake of it. Her unconscious agenda was her own feeling of superiority and rightness and little else. It's a silly game, a sickness.
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Re: The Nature of Evil

Postby Dennis Mahar » Sat Feb 25, 2012 6:00 pm

Philosophy breaks down to:

Ontology
Epistemology
Politics
Ethics
Aesthetics

Cory,
You eat World.
that is,
politics, ethics, aesthetics.
Nothing wrong with it.
These things are found to be passing fashions.
Worlds recycling.

GF contemplates Ontology,
what appears (visible)
what is behind appearances ( nuomenal)

It requires contemplation.
that doesn't happen if you're in a chick flick.
Too busy keeping the chick happy.
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