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Old 05-16-2011, 01:39 PM
 
Location: Sinking in the Great Salt Lake
13,143 posts, read 19,196,724 times
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Being a hairless bipedal ape, I have the annoying psychological tendency to catagorize and put neat little labels on everything, so sorry ahead of time.

In another thread I suggested "spirituality" could be ever so neatly divided into four catagories of progressing reality awareness:

1. True barbarism: living day to day virtually as an animal for selfish gain.

2. Religious: following/buying into an institution.

3. Agnosticsim/atheism: the realization that institutions are wrong and subsequently rejecting them in a honest search for truth.

4. True enlightenment: a theoretical higher perspective with a true understanding of the universe, it's interconnectedness and our place in it.

Please dissect this and tell my why it would/wouldn't be true.

Is there anything beyond the realizations of atheism/agnosticism? Is that the end of the progression, or just a step along the way to something bigger and more complete?

Last edited by Chango; 05-16-2011 at 01:59 PM..
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Old 05-16-2011, 02:38 PM
 
40,056 posts, read 26,739,576 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chango View Post
Being a hairless bipedal ape, I have the annoying psychological tendency to catagorize and put neat little labels on everything, so sorry ahead of time.

In another thread I suggested "spirituality" could be ever so neatly divided into four catagories of progressing reality awareness:
Please dissect this and tell my why it would/wouldn't be true.

Is there anything beyond the realizations of atheism/agnosticism? Is that the end of the progression, or just a step along the way to something bigger and more complete?
My take:

(1. = Spiritual Infancy)


1. True barbarism: living day to day virtually as an animal for selfish gain.

(2. = Spiritual childhood)


2. Religious: following/buying into an institution.

(3.= Spiritual Adolescence)

3. Agnosticsim/atheism: the realization that institutions are wrong and subsequently rejecting them in a honest search for truth.

(4. = Spiritual maturity)

4. True enlightenment: a theoretical higher perspective with a true understanding of the universe, it's interconnectedness and our place in it.

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Old 05-16-2011, 03:16 PM
 
Location: Emerald Coast, FL
5,322 posts, read 8,363,585 times
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I pretty much agree with you, OP. And I think some Buddhist and Zen masters have achieved the state enlightenment. I would classify their traditions as spiritual non-theistic philosophies.
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Old 05-16-2011, 03:51 PM
 
1,429 posts, read 2,109,864 times
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I would agree that Atheism equals "the endgame."

Atheism is when you stop thinking with your emotions and rely on logic, evidence, and things you don't have to put faith in, in order for it to make sense.

"Enlightenment" comes from living a fulfilled life, doing things that make you happy to be who you are. I'm happy with my career, I'm happy writing music, I'm happy with my family..none of it is due to religion.
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Old 05-16-2011, 04:13 PM
 
Location: Minneapolis
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I have no reason to believe that "enlightenment" exists in any truly static way. The concept is one which can only be interpreted by an individual based upon their unique psychology, emotions, and state of day-to-day existence. Whether or not enlightenment is attained is a question of a purely subjective nature.

Religious beliefs, and lack of same, do not exist on a continuum. For each individual, they are what they are--when they are.
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Old 05-16-2011, 11:34 PM
 
Location: Metromess
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One can have an appreciation of his place in the Universe and its interconnectedness without any sort of theistic "true enlightenment". A belief in any deity is unnecessary.
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Old 05-16-2011, 11:41 PM
 
40,056 posts, read 26,739,576 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catman View Post
One can have an appreciation of his place in the Universe and its interconnectedness without any sort of theistic "true enlightenment". A belief in any deity is unnecessary.
Until you encounter one.
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Old 05-16-2011, 11:46 PM
 
1,745 posts, read 1,884,617 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
Until you encounter one.
Which to date, has not happened to anyone on this planet.
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Old 05-16-2011, 11:48 PM
 
Location: The Netherlands
8,567 posts, read 14,804,653 times
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I don't think that atheism or agnosticism is the endgame.
I believe that asking questions is more important than finding them.
This explains why I agree with Einstein who stated that imagination is more important than knowledge.

FYI I don't believe in perfection like heaven, true enlightenment etc.
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Old 05-18-2011, 07:54 AM
 
Location: Log "cabin" west of Bangor
5,676 posts, read 6,774,786 times
Reputation: 10242
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chango View Post
Being a hairless bipedal ape, I have the annoying psychological tendency to catagorize and put neat little labels on everything, so sorry ahead of time.

In another thread I suggested "spirituality" could be ever so neatly divided into four catagories of progressing reality awareness:

1. True barbarism: living day to day virtually as an animal for selfish gain.

2. Religious: following/buying into an institution.

3. Agnosticsim/atheism: the realization that institutions are wrong and subsequently rejecting them in a honest search for truth.

4. True enlightenment: a theoretical higher perspective with a true understanding of the universe, it's interconnectedness and our place in it.

Please dissect this and tell my why it would/wouldn't be true.

Is there anything beyond the realizations of atheism/agnosticism? Is that the end of the progression, or just a step along the way to something bigger and more complete?
Atheism *IS* enlightenment. The Universe is a Very Big Place, it is not a sentient being and it does not care who lives or dies. It would continue to function just as well without us as it did before we made our appearance.

There is no 'meaning' to life, it simply is, and it is what you make of it.
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