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Jim’s closet

Discussion in 'The Interview Place' started by Jim, Sep 11, 2018.

  1. Jim

    Jim Nets of Wonder

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    @sun rise @PopeADope @siti @paarsurrey @Vinayaka @Katzpur @LuisDantas @CG Didymus @Mark Dohle

    I’m having one of my moments in these forums where I’m feeling lonely and wishing for I don’t know what, but it might be for people to talk to about whatever I want to talk about. I thought some of you might be available for that sometimes.

    Before I came here I was reading and posting in an atheist forum. When I first went there, it was because I had a new idea about the meanings of “God” in Christian and Baha’i scriptures, and I thought an atheist forum might be a good place to get some useful criticism. I was right about that! I ended up with a new way of thinking about it that answered a question that had puzzled me for decades.

    I came to these forums because I was curious to see what a friend of mine was doing here, and I wanted to explore some possibilities for the Internet that I’ve been dreaming of for years. I’m confident now that everything I’m dreaming of will happen. In fact I’ve already seen all of it happening on a small scale.

    When I first started posting in Internet discussions almost 20 years ago, it was mostly to free myself from my own prejudices and delusions, by spending time with some of the people whose ideas and interests seemed most contrary to mine. First it was with gay activists and leaders of change ministries trying to have civil dialogues about their disagreements. Then it was gay Baha’is, then Baha’is and former Baha’is feuding about Baha’i administration, then atheists feuding about feminism and social justice, then some people feuding about the Trinity.

    For a few years I kept trying to put myself in the line of fire of people’s prejudices, thinking that might help break them down, but I never saw that do anything but harm, so I gave it up. One thing that kept surprising me while I was doing that was the arrows coming from behind me, from the people I thought I was defending. One reason was because sometimes they turned against me when they saw that I wasn’t trying to be a political ally.

    Another of my goals has been to learn to be a friend to some of the people I’ve seen being stigmatized and marginalized the most. I’ve had some ups and downs with that.

    One recurring failure has been with Baha’is. I’ve never practiced the kind of behavior with them that I want to practice, as well as I have with others. I’m assuming that has something to do with being a member, myself.

    I’ve been thinking about the next dividing line I want to try erasing between myself and others. It might be with people in anti-male and anti-white counterfeit feminism and social justice, if I can find a way to spend some time with them. I’ve already spent a lot of time with some of their worst adversaries, in the Slyme Pit.
     
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  2. JoshuaTree

    JoshuaTree Flowers are red?

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    Cool, you're in good company I think. :)

    1 Corinthians 9:19-23 New International Version (NIV)

    Paul’s Use of His Freedom

    19 Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 20 To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. 21 To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God’s law but am under Christ’s law), so as to win those not having the law. 22 To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. 23 I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.
     
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  3. gregoo

    gregoo New Member

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    very interesting Jim.,

    to erase a dividing line, we must try to understand other's people point of view. A lot of people who try to fight racism do not try to understand racist. Therefore their fight will not work.
    A good struggle I think is try to convince some incels to adopt another approcah to women
     
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  4. Katzpur

    Katzpur Not your average Mormon

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    I'd totally be up for a conversation, Jim. You already know how much I admire you. I'm really confused by some of the things you said in your OP, though. You make it sound as if you were once very prejudiced and yet you come across to me as one of the least prejudiced people on this forum. I don't get it. I found this statement particularly intriguing:

    Would you mind elaborating? (I ask because I find it very difficult to relate to my fellow Mormons!) All I know for sure is that most of the time, I feel like I really don't "fit" anywhere. My beliefs, attitude and worldview is either too conservative or too liberal. I'm either too religious or not religious enough. It can be a huge emotional strain. I don't know if this is even remotely related to what you're talking about or not, but it's where I am right now.
     
    #4 Katzpur, Sep 11, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2018
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  5. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    Dont you find that the least flawed people tend to be the
    ones who find the most fault in themselves?
     
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  6. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    Failable humans will always let you down regardless of what you believe.

    From my perspective our dialogue has been fruitful and positive without putting any expectations on how you view of the Baha'i Faith. The gardens of the Baha'i Faith are the fruits of the diversity of humanity.

    I have been a Baha'i for over fifty years, and as a matter of fact no one, nor no Baha'i can measure up to the standards of Baha'i Principles and Law, because we are fallible human. The Baha'i spiritual principles, and laws are considered 'guidance,' and our failings are not a measure of our devotion to the Baha'i Faith. It is our sincerity as Baha'is that is the measure of our spiritual nature.

    I was a student of Buddhism and Arts of the Way (Martial Arts) for years before I became a Baha'i, and still am a student of the Arts of the Way and Buddha.since. I learned nothing is necessary, and we must detach ourselves form all things and take the Middle Way to the path of shunya, before we can believe. I also became a philosophical skeptic and question everything including my belief in the Baha'i Faith. My believe cannot be based on rational justification.

    All the sacred texts of the world become an encyclopedia of the human spiritual evolution to a large extent from the fallible human journey. Any single ancient religion entrenched in the culture they were revealed in and their belief in exclusiveness fails in the considering the universal nature of humans became human and Revelation from the first Adam.

    The first question that will always never be truly answered from the fallible human perspective and it is 'Does God(s) exist?' I concluded IF God exists, God is more compassionate from the perspective of the universal than any human, nor religious belief can encompass including the Baha'i Faith. From the fallible human perspective and by the evidence it is possible that no God(s) exist, and I have to take that into consideration regardless of what I believe.

    I believe a universal compassionate apophatic God exists and Created our existence eternally as reflection of the attributes of God, and not in the image and nature described by any one religion nor belief system including the Baha'i Faith. .
     
    #6 shunyadragon, Sep 11, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2018
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  7. Katzpur

    Katzpur Not your average Mormon

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    Quite possibly!
     
  8. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    Not to get political, but Trump may be a example of the opposite.
     
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  9. Marcion

    Marcion Well-Known Member

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    All the more remarkable that you made the link from Buddhism to Baha'i, quite a leap!
     
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  10. sun rise

    sun rise "This is the Hour of God"
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    That can be a very creative place. It's not automatic, of course, but there is a potential. There can be many states that show up as feeling lonely from missing interaction to existential loneliness. The urge to write has mostly left me, but five years ago I wrote the following when I was feeling an existential void and just being with the feeling and letting it resolve itself into a slow birth that once again has me engaged with life on a slightly different level:

    A man sits
    by a tomb,
    head bowed,
    lost in thought.

    Tears
    at a life ended.
    No where to go,
    nothing to do.

    Former joy
    is now ashes.
    Former life
    is now silent.

    Surrendering,
    he merges
    with the cold, still earth.

    Dawn's mist
    invokes quiet and peace.
    Existence is an eternity
    of patient waiting.

    Slowly felt:
    dawn's earth warming light.

    From the tomb,
    a seed opens;
    a flower begins
    its slow sunward journey.
     
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  11. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    Actually no, Buddhism is very much in harmony with religions in general by its teaching mostly by what Buddha did not teach. Many assume that ancient religions as taught today is what was originally taught, and ignore the evidence of the cultural overlay and human influence over time.

    I believe that the purpose of Buddhism was to detach one from the cultural images of God(s), doctrines and dogmas of ancient religions, and begin again with the belief that nothing is necessary.
     
    #11 shunyadragon, Sep 11, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2018
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  12. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    You should by unimpressed. The purpose of the Baha'i Faith is not to impress you.
     
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  13. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    An oft repeated theme, that!

    Nowhere blossoms the rose so red
    as where so fallen hero bled.
     
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  14. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    Personal preference is what your talking about. Self-defined perspicacity is a rather circular egocentric view of the world. I do not make such a claim, nor is my cat-a-pult armed with such words.
     
    #14 shunyadragon, Sep 11, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2018
  15. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    Jim, I think Katzpur will be well worth dialoging with. In the other thread, those 3 rules/suggestions were really inspiring. Just as there are, in the Baha'i a few more 'literal/fundamental' folks, so too in Mormonism. We've had one or two pop up on these forums, and Katzpur has admirably taken them on.

    On a personal level, when I look at other faiths, I do ask, "Does that make sense?" a lot. It doesn't have to make sense to me personally, it's more just "would this make sense to anyone?" I get really questioning when the answer to that is 'No.'

    In the end, there are a lot of folks who 'go it alone' within a faith. I know quite a few personally and it's really the most sound method, in my view. It puts the onus on yourself to figure things out.
     
    #15 Vinayaka, Sep 11, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2018
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  16. Spiderman

    Spiderman Veteran Member

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    Do you use mind-altering chemicals?

    Anyway, even Saints were sinners. I believe you will be rewarded for your pain and loneliness in this life.

    People like Buddha, Gandhi, moses, Mother Teresa, Francis of Assisi, and Jesus Christ, all dealt with loneliness or rejection.

    If you deal with rejection and loneliness, it's probably nothing you've done that's wrong.

    A lot of people get rejected for good qualities.

    Try to focus on the things which boost your morale and give you Joy. Train your mind to focus on those things.

    I'll try to do the same, because I focus on the negative too much.
     
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  17. Nakosis

    Nakosis crystal soldier
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    Well, I hope they learn something from you.
     
  18. siti

    siti Well-Known Member

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    Wow! Thanks @shunyadragon. That's a perfect name for my "religion" - I'm a self-defined perspicacitist everyone! And my religion is self-defined perspicaticism. Just in case anyone is interested. :musicnotes: I can see clearly now the rain has gone... :musicnotes:

    PS - sorry @Jim - I don't suppose that is helping much is it...or is it? Hmmm! Maybe self-defined perspicacitism is actually everyone's religion...maybe therein lies the problem...what say?
     
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  19. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    Perspicacitist or perspicacitism is one of those long words that increases your hat size two sizes. Not really in my cat-a-pult vocabulary.
     
  20. siti

    siti Well-Known Member

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    Yes indeed! Perspicacity and big hats are the two principle aims of my religion - like old King Solomon who was divinely blessed with "wisdom and perspicacity and largeness of hat" (I Kings 4:29 - siti's version)
     
    #20 siti, Sep 11, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2018
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