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spike418
(@spike418)
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20/03/2010 6:56 am  

Just a quick poll really as I would be interested to know what the majority opinion is.

There is no need for proofs or complex refutations to be provided, please also try and refrain from playground squabbles ................


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 Anonymous
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20/03/2010 7:09 am  

Greetings!

I believe it's both at the same time, like the two sides of a coin... which option should I choose? 🙂

Regards
Hecate


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alysa
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20/03/2010 7:23 am  

Maybe you just have to find that out for yourself, do magikcal invocations of beings like god(esses), demons, and the like, and expirience for yourself.


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Michael Staley
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MANIO - it's all in the egg
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20/03/2010 8:09 am  
"Hecate" wrote:
I believe it's both at the same time, like the two sides of a coin... which option should I choose?

I share your view, Hecate, and chose option 3 as the nearest to it.

Best wishes,

Michael.


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 Anonymous
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20/03/2010 8:25 am  

Thank you Michael! 🙂

Regards
Hecate


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alysa
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20/03/2010 8:40 am  

I have no problem with chosing option 3, though must say, most people seem to have trouble with fighting their own inner demons, nowadays.


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 Anonymous
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20/03/2010 8:52 am  
"MichaelStaley" wrote:
"Hecate" wrote:
I believe it's both at the same time, like the two sides of a coin... which option should I choose?

I share your view, Hecate, and chose option 3 as the nearest to it.

Best wishes,

Michael.

yeah, what they said. More later (hate posting messages from my phone.).


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spike418
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20/03/2010 9:16 am  
"MichaelStaley" wrote:
"Hecate" wrote:
I believe it's both at the same time, like the two sides of a coin... which option should I choose?

I share your view, Hecate, and chose option 3 as the nearest to it.

Best wishes,

Michael.

Hecate, Michael & Maldoror

Harumph! That's buggered my poll then 😉

Do your answers mean that you don't believe it is possible for any demons/spirits/angels etc to have an independent existence or were you suggesting there should be a fourth option?

Regards
Spike


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 Anonymous
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20/03/2010 10:02 am  

Given the holographic universe theories and 100th monkey concepts, the idea of an egregore could be both rather than a sum of either/or. Effectively, this could even become a living archetype.

I have experienced beings I perceive as beyond our mundane world and independent from me. But if they are independent from from all man and conscious physical beings, I can not say. So I propose this as at least a subset of 3.


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 Anonymous
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20/03/2010 10:54 am  

Greetings!

I believe that everything in the physical or the inner world mirrors a part of All that I am and that I wouldn’t be able to recognize something if I wasn’t one with it already. As they say, “it’s in the eye of the beholder”. Eventually, this leads me to keep integrating consciously everything that causes to me any kind of friction. This is different from the concept expressed in the statement “I’m not this, nor that…”; it’s more something like “ah! I am that too!” 🙂

However, I see the first concept as a necessary step in order to get to the second, since, if someone realizes that everything is an alteration of the mind, then one can also accept these alterations as the big game of the Creator (part of whom one is), and return to the playground, but this time in order to actually enjoy the game.

On the other hand, the idea of mirroring itself means that one takes a part of oneself, consciously or not, and puts it in front of oneself as a subject to be studied. In this context, I consider everything around me in all planes as independent beings.

I guess one cannot deny that the separation exists on the earth field and the inner fields closer to that, but I feel that on a much higher (or deeper) level, we are One.

Regards
Hecate


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 Anonymous
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20/03/2010 11:16 am  

Just as each cell of my body is individual from every other. yet they are all dependent upon one another, and part of the greater whole of my body. Similarly so for each molecule, atom and sub-atomic particle. Logic would suggest to me that this pattern extends into the indefinable macrocosm as well, where we become micro-organisms in the body of Gaia, the Sol system, the Milky Way, etc.

To this end, I believe I can agree with you completely Hecate.


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spike418
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20/03/2010 11:50 am  
"TwoEdgedSword" wrote:
Just as each cell of my body is individual from every other. yet they are all dependent upon one another, and part of the greater whole of my body. Similarly so for each molecule, atom and sub-atomic particle. Logic would suggest to me that this pattern extends into the indefinable macrocosm as well, where we become micro-organisms in the body of Gaia, the Sol system, the Milky Way, etc.

To this end, I believe I can agree with you completely Hecate.

I understand what you are saying BUT my point is really this. If you and I met in a bar there would presumably be no doubting my independent existence. Now if we swap the bar for a temple/triangle or circle ( and we must unfortunately for this experiment!) and then exchange you for a demon. Can you see what I mean by this? I personally believe they can exist.

I think I fornulated the poll wrong to try and catch all. It should have been.

Do some demons/spirits/angels have an independent existence? Yes or no.....


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 Anonymous
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20/03/2010 12:16 pm  

Do what thou wilt, spike.

I understand your point, and as I said earlier, I've perceived these beings (at least some of them) as individual from me, and so I treat them as such. To do so otherwise would be a waste of time and self-indulgent folly... to me.

Independent, as in existing without our existence? That is a tricky concept that I am incapable of either proving or disproving to myself. For this reason I must concede to number 3.

Love is the Law.


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Michael Staley
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21/03/2010 9:46 am  
"spike418" wrote:
I understand what you are saying BUT my point is really this. If you and I met in a bar there would presumably be no doubting my independent existence. Now if we swap the bar for a temple/triangle or circle ( and we must unfortunately for this experiment!) and then exchange you for a demon. Can you see what I mean by this? I personally believe they can exist.

I agree with you on this. However, I'd like to expand on why I would have answered that in my opinion they are both subjective and objective.

The background to this, in my opinion, is non-duality. I like the Hindu conception that we are in a play with a myriad roles, that Brahma is playing all the roles, but that he has immersed himself in each role so deeply that he has forgotten his cosmic or global identity. The fragmentation is transient, apparent rather than real, just as the wave is a transient expression of the ocean.

As ever, it's a matter of planes. Thus if you and I met in a bar then yes we would each have independent existence from one perspective - such that we could buy each other a pint or two, banter about magic and mysticism and Arsenal etc. - but from another we wouldn't.

Best wishes,

Michael.


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 Anonymous
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21/03/2010 1:09 pm  

I don't like the labels - spirit, demon, extraterrestrial etc. The labels suggest we know something of the origin of these things, and that a hypothesis (beings from another planet, aspects of god, or ghosts) must be valid.

I certainly had something knock over my bedroom furniture once. That suggests to me an independant existance of 'something'. This 'something' displayed an intent in it's behaviour so I can postulate it had a mind. And I doubt that whatever it was, that it was unique.


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alysa
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21/03/2010 1:34 pm  

Alrah, you have a point, why we humans always wish to name and define everything that might exist.


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 Anonymous
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21/03/2010 2:34 pm  

93 everyone,

Let me begin by stating that I have no direct experience of demons, gods, etc.

But I too believe like some others in this poll that it is a high possibility that these gods/demons simultaneously are and are not. Much like a Moebius strip, or like our universe that seems to exist both out of something and nothing.

When someone asked Sri Ramana Maharshi if these entities existed he answered that individual human souls are not the only beings known. That these beings are as real as we are in our bodies.
When the interviewer asked him where exactly do these beings exist he answered that they exist inside us.
Surely then, the interviewer pressed, these are then only ideas, which we can create and control.
To which Sri Ramana answered: Everything is like that.

So when you consider yourself real, these entities are just as real as you are.
But from the standpoint of the 'Self' all these are illusory.

Just my two cents


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 Anonymous
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21/03/2010 4:51 pm  

I think a quote from Crowley would do nicely here:

"But do remember this, above all else; they are objective, not subjective, or I should not waste good Magick on them."

He raises a valid point...


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 Anonymous
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21/03/2010 5:03 pm  

I agree N.O.X.

Also, one very powerful movie I saw which dealed essentially with this topic is Brad Anderson's 'Session 9'.


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ZIN
 ZIN
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21/03/2010 9:15 pm  

In chapter 58 of Magick Without Tears : "Do Angels Ever Cut Themselves Shaving?" ( This applies to any Infernal being as well ) Crowley writes ::

"It seems to me much simpler to say that these Angels are "real" individuals, although living in a world of whoes laws we have no conception; and that, in order to communicate with us, they make use of symbolic forms appropriate; employ, in short, the language of the Astral plane."

So, yes, cara spike418, there is a Santa Claus....


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Anonymous
 Anonymous
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22/03/2010 12:11 am  

I tend to vote 1, with strong shades of 3.

Speaking as a paranormalist, I have often been on locations where an entity is present and "psychically" sensed by a number of people. Again this is something which needs to be experienced rather than described ( I am very sceptical towards the idea of detecting ghosts using gauss masters, emf detectors etc). But we have found that separate people have experienced the same sensations without a chance to pre-collaborate. But then I do believe that the future of ghost hunting is experiential rather than empirical.

When it comes to more "occult creatures" whatever they may be I have found that they feel less independant than ghosts. Very "3" for the survey, but with an individuality which is clearly present. I think on this level beings are really out there but the main interface they have to interact with us is formed out of our imagination. The more symbols, concepts and ideas we (as magicians) have means that there is more available language for use in rapport.

Having said that there are exceptions to this. I have experienced communication were words were "spoken" in my mind exhibiting a use of language not my own. Words I understood, but which were so far from my daily vocabulary that I needed reminding as to what they meant beyond their given context. If it was purely from myself I would have expected a vastly different use of language; and whilst skeptics might argue that these things are auto-suggestion; frankly in my experience i dont think that autosuggestion is actually that strong.

I do however think that the idea of "entities" is very complicated and that to an extent we dont have anywhere near enough to come out with a comprehensive theory as to what we are dealing with. Where would people place Tulpas for example in the above categories. Perhaps these are things which start as a 2, move to a 3 and then become a 1. Alexandra David-Neel's account suggests that this might be so.

Cheers Paolo


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 Anonymous
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22/03/2010 12:52 am  

Sure He runs this site. Paul Feazy


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Anonymous
 Anonymous
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22/03/2010 12:57 am  

Yes, they exist, as independant entities. I don't talk about those larvae you can encounter during a kardecian experiment. I'm talking about those forces who can affect reality, steal or destroy objects, and /or use other being such as weakened people, or birds, cats, or dogs.
I have experimented those really disturbing things from time to time, for more than 20 years. i can assure you they are real. Their sources are numerous. Some are neutral, and some are hungry for energy (and there is a lot of different energies). And some are solely wandering, trying to perform something, then disappear when they succeed or fail.
Obviously, some are egregores… But they are very few compared to those which wander and walk sometimes among us.


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frater_anubis
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22/03/2010 3:08 pm  

Greetings

I would vote yes to the first part of this survey, they exist independently.

Many moons ago I was part of a group studying an occult system based on universal principles of truth. This Order had spun out of the GD in the 1890's and the meetings were held at the residence of a dowager Soror who was a very good gardener. On many occasions elementals and sprites manifested at the open patio door to her colourfull garden. One caught them out of the corner of the eye as flashes of movement and colour, they liked to chase one another. The Soror was greatly amused at how often they startled me, she called them Mescalitos and said they kept her company during the summer evenings and said that they had a wicked sense of humour.

Apparently they had first manifested during a practical Examen as a Probationer passed to the grade of Neophyte and I was greatly encouraged in my studies to be able to perceive them.

Regards

Johnny


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 Anonymous
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22/03/2010 4:40 pm  
"MichaelStaley" wrote:
The background to this, in my opinion, is non-duality. I like the Hindu conception that we are in a play with a myriad roles, that Brahma is playing all the roles, but that he has immersed himself in each role so deeply that he has forgotten his cosmic or global identity. The fragmentation is transient, apparent rather than real, just as the wave is a transient expression of the ocean.

As ever, it's a matter of planes. Thus if you and I met in a bar then yes we would each have independent existence from one perspective - such that we could buy each other a pint or two, banter about magic and mysticism and Arsenal etc. - but from another we wouldn't.

I very much prefer "star" to "wave," Michael.


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Michael Staley
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22/03/2010 5:42 pm  
"Camlion" wrote:
I very much prefer "star" to "wave," Michael.

"Every man and woman is a wave" - has a nice sweep to it, I think. Would definitely appeal to Thelemic hairdressers here, there and everywhere.

A myriad glinting highlights,

Michael.


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 Anonymous
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22/03/2010 5:49 pm  

Straighteners are the Law! Perms are the 90's.

But it is written - Every man and woman must have a kink somewhere...


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 Anonymous
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22/03/2010 5:51 pm  
"MichaelStaley" wrote:
"Camlion" wrote:
I very much prefer "star" to "wave," Michael.

"Every man and woman is a wave" - has a nice sweep to it, I think. Would definitely appeal to Thelemic hairdressers here, there and everywhere.

A myriad glinting highlights.

because of my hair the trees of Eternity. AL I,59 🙂


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Los
 Los
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22/03/2010 6:40 pm  

I voted for option two, on the grounds that there's not a single shred of evidence that there is such a thing as intelligence without a physical body.


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mika
 mika
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22/03/2010 9:45 pm  
"Los" wrote:
I voted for option two, on the grounds that there's not a single shred of evidence that there is such a thing as intelligence without a physical body.

Yes.

There's a whole lot of sloppy assumptions being stated here. As in, "I experienced XYZ, therefore entities independent from the mind exist". While those experiences may really have happened, the interpretations of those experiences are not necessarily (or inherently) accurate. There is no actual evidence of the objective existence of an intelligence without a physical body, there is only the subjective interpretation of personal experiences. Seeming real does not make it actually real.

I don't deny the possibility that an intelligence without a physical body might exist, because we can't prove the negative - we can't conclusively say that something doesn't exist. But we can, clearly, state that there is no evidence to support the positive. No evidence means any such claims are nothing more than wishful thinking, or blind belief.


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 Anonymous
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22/03/2010 10:30 pm  

Your assertions could just as easily be called a sloppy assumption as well mind you. One can experience for instance a spirit or some such entity in dream or vision, yet know that it is in some way a product of their imagination, leading one to the belief that sprirts are all just constructs of the mind and imagination faculty. Yet this belief may eventually be shattered when one experiences an entity or spirit that puts off such an aire of "otherness" that one can intuitively know without a doubt the independent existence of that entity. To reinforce this belief, such contact may as well be tied into strange and inexplicable events taking place in the physically surrounds of the individual experiencing such entities, and even witnessed by others who are unaware of any extra terrestrial contact.
I would like to note that while I personally believe in such entities and related phenomena, I do not in any way believe in the super natural.


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mika
 mika
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22/03/2010 11:09 pm  
"AEternitas" wrote:
Your assertions could just as easily be called a sloppy assumption as well mind you.

Well, you could call them that, but you would be wrong. Asserting that there is no reliable evidence to support the conclusion that spirits objectively exist is not a "sloppy assumption", it's a statement of fact. If you think I'm wrong, then, where's the evidence? Is there some scientific, peer-reviewed study out there that demonstrates the existence of non-corporeal entities that I haven't seen yet?

"AEternitas" wrote:
...one experiences an entity or spirit that puts off such an aire of "otherness" that one can intuitively know without a doubt the independent existence of that entity. To reinforce this belief, such contact may as well be tied into strange and inexplicable events taking place in the physically surrounds of the individual experiencing such entities, and even witnessed by others who are unaware of any extra terrestrial contact.

Intuition is not evidence. Shared "strange and inexplicable events" also are not evidence. As I said, the experiences may be real, but the interpretations of those experiences do not constitute evidence. 100 people can share the same vision of the Virgin Mary yet that still does not mean some objective, independently existing spirit of the Virgin Mary manifested to visual appearance. It simply means that 100 people had an experience that *can be described as* a vision of the Virgin Mary. Claiming that the spirit really exists based on that experience is a belief, it's not a "known fact without a doubt".


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Michael Staley
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22/03/2010 11:38 pm  

That's fine, sweeties. Believe what you like.


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 Anonymous
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23/03/2010 12:26 am  

By "strange and inexplicable events" I was more referring to "poltergeist" activity such as light bulbs exploding, objects moving, mysterious events and coincidences and domestic animals reacting to the "perceived" presence of spirits or perhaps even that your objective was obtained through that goetic working you had performed the other day. Mass "hallucinations" can be placed within this category but that isn't quite what I was referring to.
I chose category three, though I find the option unsatisfactory. It seems convenient to say that spirits are a construct of the mind and the imagination, much easier than accepting their independent existence. I more believe that they exist in as independent of a manner as anything else and that they are experienced through the receptive faculties of the mind and imagination.
Science has been unable to pin down evidence of the existence of spirits, but they are equally as unable to confirm that they do not exist after some fashion. And so the phenomena of spirits remains a mystery and we are thus free to believe what we like as Michael said, regarding their existence based on experience, intuitive knowledge and preference or what have you.


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 Anonymous
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23/03/2010 12:29 am  
"mika" wrote:
But we can, clearly, state that there is no evidence to support the positive. No evidence means any such claims are nothing more than wishful thinking, or blind belief.

Sorry to inform you, but no evidence does not confirm the negative, nor vise versa.

Only negative evidence could substantiate that, "any such claims are nothing more than wishful thinking, or blind belief."


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Los
 Los
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23/03/2010 12:45 am  
"TwoEdgedSword" wrote:
Sorry to inform you, but no evidence does not confirm the negative, nor vise versa

Sure, but we're not justified in accepting a claim until there's evidence for it.

For example, there is also no evidence that purple pixies exist. Nothing we have ever discovered about the universe suggests that such a thing exists. The lack of evidence doesn't *prove* that purple pixies don't exist, but it does mean that no one is justified in accepting the claim "purple pixies exist" until evidence is forthcoming.

In average, everyday speech, I would be ok saying, "There's no such thing as purple pixies," understood to mean, "There's no good reason to think that purple pixies exist and there won't be good reason to think that they exist until and when evidence for their existence is produced."


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 Anonymous
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23/03/2010 1:04 am  

Well, it certainly would seem that perhaps more than a few members of this forum would have good reason to think that spirits and such may exist.
I don't expect anyone to believe in spirits simply because someone claimed that they exist, and I don't think anyone here is saying that either.
Spirits and related phenomena have been a part of the human experience for quite some time regardless of the inability of modern science to prove their existence.
Despite what can be proven as objective fact by science, individuals and groups continue to experience spirits, pixies, angels, demons etc etc.
As a practicing magician, it's certainly convenient to act as if spirits are real. A magician also has the added convenience of intuitive knowledge without feeling the need to have their experences verified or justified by others.


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 Anonymous
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23/03/2010 1:11 am  
"TwoEdgedSword" wrote:
Sorry to inform you, but no evidence does not confirm the negative, nor vise versa.

Sorry to inform you, but "no evidence" certainly does confirm the negative when the positive makes predictions about what evidence we should observe, but do not.

If you were to postulate that there's a massive but invisible object floating around somewhere between Saturn and Jupiter, then that claim would make predictions about the gravitational effects that we should observe on other celestial bodies. Our failure to observe those expected gravitational effects - that expected evidence - confirms that the postulated massive but invisible object is not, in fact, there.

Similarly, if someone makes a claim that they are in touch with invisible goblins who are both able and willing to, say, regularly provide them with the winning lottery numbers, or give them some kind of remote knowledge, or provide them with detailed information about future events, then we can confirm the falsity of that claim by observing them attempting to acquire such information and routinely failing.

Any claim which makes predictions about observable effects - and this, by definition, includes any claims regarding evidence of "objective" and "external" angels, since there can be no such evidence in the absence of observable effects - can be refuted by simply observing the lack of those observable effects when they are expected to be observable, which is what always happens when they are subjected to independent scrutiny.

As for claims which do not make predictions about observable effects, then - as Carl Sagan said - claims made without evidence can be dismissed without evidence.


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 Anonymous
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23/03/2010 2:33 am  

That's all good and fine for physical phenomena such as objects in space and so forth.
But we aren't talking about physical objects and their observable effects. What we are discussing is a phenomena that science, by the fault of it's own methods, is unable to observe or acknowledge.


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 Anonymous
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23/03/2010 4:30 am  

Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.

Los: I believe I can completely agree with your last post

Erwin: In both your examples, you have provided negative evidence! Your examples both provide a theory that would produce observable/measurable effects at calculated times. Under those examples the theory failed, so there is negative evidence.

Love is the law, love under will.


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 Anonymous
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23/03/2010 4:52 am  

Los,

Just to elaborate upon your post: As I said, I do agree with you... but conditionally.

I can not prove to you my experience. You would be a superstitions fool to accept my story without cause. This, to me, is part of the nature of Gnosis and/or Scientific Illuminism. I suspect there are many things for which Man will never have evidence. Conversly, I would be a fool to let you rob me of my experience.

The best example I can think of at the moment would require us to step backward in our medical knowledge and understanding of today. Suppose that I sometimes have an experience of kidney stones after drinking milk. However, you have never had such experience. For the brief time we have met, I can give you no evidence of my experience. I would be an absolute idiot to ignore my experience due to lack of evidence; and the inverse would be true for you.


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kidneyhawk
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23/03/2010 5:05 am  

What we are discussing is a phenomena that science, by the fault of it's own methods, is unable to observe or acknowledge.

This, AEternitas, is a vital point.

I have to add, however: in a previous debate, there was a poster who yelped at Erwin, saying that because he couldn't prove aliens didn't exist that the burden of proof fell on him. I cringed when reading this.

Although I hold views very different from Mr. Hessle, I also hold views which are in line with his own. Nor do I feel that such views need be in conflict.

Reason and Logic are very important. In fact, crucial. We all possess these faculties and yet they, like any other capability, may be continually sharpened. I personally find myself inclined towards the integration of reason and imagination. If reason tries to crush out the imaginative element of perception and experience, it becomes an imbalanced force which requires checking. This is the basis of so much of William Blake's mythology. Conversely, if imagination attempts to sidestep reason, it is also entering perilous territory. Ideally, we will find models that are integrative in this regard.

I personally hold to views that may be considered "supernatural," if you will, but I also feel that I am accountable to these views. My answer to the objections of "rationalism" may be of a nature that doesn't satisfy the complaint on its own terms-but I feel that it must bridge the gap and provide an answer that possesses some integrity.

In this regard, Aleister Crowley is a truly unique figure to look towards. The mystical "occultist" is going to find justification in Crowley as is the "materialist" and "rationalist." Part of the "Paradox of Crowley" is his own integration of these elements. Faults and foibles aside, Crowley remains (despite being a "product of his times") an extraordinarily exponent of human THOUGHT.

Quite frankly, I think AC is too "weird" to be embraced by our present philosophical studies at large. This is a shame as I think his body of work needs to be viewed as a development of human philosophic thought. Individuals like Mr. Hessle are going to be instrumental in bringing his work into this overdue consideration.

I voted #3. This accords with my experience and my reason. But as much as I might declare how "reason is limited," I must also acknowledge that my OWN reason is limited, my own imagination and intuition is limited, everything I am is limited. So we push on-which is why one of my favorite words is "investigation."

Above all, it's Robert Anton Wilson who most inspires me here. We conceive of multiple models to give context for what we are dealing with-and we summon up the fortitude of spirit whereby we aren't sucked into "obsession" with any one model.

Otherwise, we are just reasoning to justify what we've settled upon. And THAT is a stupid fight.


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 Anonymous
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23/03/2010 11:06 am  
"AEternitas" wrote:
But we aren't talking about physical objects and their observable effects. What we are discussing is a phenomena that science, by the fault of it's own methods, is unable to observe or acknowledge.

Like I said, if it's not observable, then there is no evidence for it - i.e. you don't have any evidence for it, let alone "science" - and if there's no evidence for it, then you're simply making it all up.

"TwoEdgedSword" wrote:
I would be an absolute idiot to ignore my experience due to lack of evidence

On the contrary - you've just admitted yourself that your experience has provided you with no evidence. Believing in this stuff is precisely what happens when you do "ignore [your] experience".


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 Anonymous
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23/03/2010 12:43 pm  

If something is real, it requires neither imagination nor reason (nor belief) to be beheld. It inserts itself into your experience on a -- consciously -- involuntary basis, according to the normal reasoning waking ego's perspective.

Experiences which I have had, which might, for want of a more mature mode of communication than what we presently have, be called 'paranormal' or 'magical' or the like, have each time been directly perceived as objective experience, both physical and actual, as well as in a few instances involving an altered state of consciousness produced by either dream or by ritual, but the confirming substance of the experience was in each case direct, objective, and had nothing to do with any sort of imaginings or reasonings on my part. Also involving no i) drugs or other extremity of nervous energy such as fatigue or illness; ii) no “imaginary” input from me whatsoever; iii) no rationale or reasoning towards anything at the time, except maybe retrospectively, long after the event when contemplating the record of events. The closest that I can get to a description of what I mean is that it's like an echo here of something which takes place where a different part of me is, a long way away, which is where I probably wind up in essence during ritual, and in deep dream, and probably where I'm projecting from, into these phenomenal elements, to start with.

And in general life, the most 'wierd' real stuff is usually defined as such simply because it is literally something which had never been imagined nor reasoned-to, before its discovery. Think about this - so the real is already infinitely wierder than anything we can either imagine or reason towards. Angels and demons are really real, but, like us, they're more, and other, than those two modern English words can usefully convey.

Discoveries about real reality can however be made through reason and imagination working together in the absence of reality – and, to a point - in the purely abstract realms of conjecture - but their collapse into truth is declared only upon satisfaction of a third and final condition, namely, the reification of their contents through observation ; observation which neither involves nor requires either faculty (reason or imagination) in a conscious sense to behold that which it beholds, to observe. Imagination and Reason can, however, both be considered as organs of perception of objects which exist on their own levels.

That is why Reason - as being more integral to, and reinforcing of, the ego, than imagination is - is typified as a dog in Liber AL. It belongs to mammalian, terrestrial consciousness, unable to perceive or indeed conceive objects beyond certain limited horizons, its little rules, its stories, expectations and categories. Higher/deeper consciousness than reason can still speak of the reality which it perceives through the imagination, however, in its transmission of objects which may only be perceived by faculties which reside beyond the domain of mammalian/terrestrial consciousness. Models beheld by or made by reason may in fact have a lower fidelity to reality in certain respects than models beheld by, or made by, the imagination, but that probably depends upon how well developed, how sensitive, how disciplined and how articulate the imagination is in a given individual. That's why it is important to exercise the imagination as well as to exercise reason. In other words, it may be that the systemic nature of reason (especially as a habit) is a content filter which due to its linear nature yields more noise in the reality-signal than that which is presented by the imagination alone.

Maaan.


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Michael Staley
(@michael-staley)
MANIO - it's all in the egg
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 3948
23/03/2010 12:46 pm  
"Los" wrote:
Sure, but we're not justified in accepting a claim until there's evidence for it.

What's this "We", as one urologist said to another?

It all depends on the nature of the evidence, doesn't it? For instance, I have never knowingly seen a ghost. However, I have friends who have seen such phenomena, and since I know them to be people of integrity I accept their accounts.

I have no evidence of the varacity of, say, prajnaparamita Buddhism, or Taoism. My intuition, formed on the basis of years of study and meditation, tells me that the principles are sound. I wouldn't expect you to accept something on the basis of my intuition. If, however, your reference to "We" means that in your opinion I have no right to believe something without proof that I can demonstrate to a third party, then I'd suggest with all due respect that you mind your own business.

Best wishes,

Michael.


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 Anonymous
Joined: 50 years ago
Posts: 0
23/03/2010 1:39 pm  

Something tipping over both my sofa and my bed at the same time was evidence enough for me. That was over 10 years ago. These things happen so infrequently and without warning that it would be surprising if there was any scientifically accepted evidence of it. That doesn't mean there hasn't been any evidence, or that people are 'making things up', just because you (Los & Erwin) haven't gotten un/lucky enough to have your bedroom rearranged too.


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 Anonymous
Joined: 50 years ago
Posts: 0
23/03/2010 2:28 pm  
"alrah" wrote:
Something tipping over both my sofa and my bed at the same time was evidence enough for me.

Then you are essentially confessing to being sufficiently gullible and guileless as to be willingly prepared to accept enormously crappy evidence. Even if we were to accept your extremely dubious account, there are billions of possible foolish explanations for it. Some super-rare stray gravity particle could have shot across space from the Pegasus galaxy and knocked them over. David Copperfield could have been working on a routine, unwittingly and accidentally stumbled across some real supernatural powers and inadvertently tipped them over from a distance. You could, of course, have simply gotten blindingly drunk - as is your wont - and simply forgotten that you stumbled into them and tipped them over yourself earlier in the evening.

That's the problem with trying to draw conclusions based on isolated "inexplicable events" - you have no explanation for them. If, despite the lack of an explanation, you simply arbitrarily elect to choose one particular foolish possibility from a list of billions of other foolish possibilities, and just make a leap of faith to "goblins did it" then you certainly are just "making things up". It's not a question of whether "science can prove it" - if you, yourself, do not have reliable and replicable evidence, then you have no grounds for coming to the conclusions you are coming to either, regardless of what "science" is able to do.

There's a technical name for the type of thought process you're indulging in, and it's called the "argument from personal incredulity". What it boils down to is you saying that "I, alrah, am personally incapable of conceiving of any other explanation for this phenomenon than 'goblins did it', therefore goblins must have done it." This is not a reliable way to acquire knowledge.


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Michael Staley
(@michael-staley)
MANIO - it's all in the egg
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 3948
23/03/2010 4:01 pm  

Erwin,

In your rush to spray your customary rounds of abrasive, offensive and insulting remarks you appear to have overlooked the terminating "for me". Alrah was there at the time; you weren't. It's clear that Alrah is not saying "you must take my word for it" but simply that she found it compelling. If you want to live your life solely on the basis of what is demonstrable to a third party, then good for you; others don't.

Best wishes,

Michael.


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 Anonymous
Joined: 50 years ago
Posts: 0
23/03/2010 4:06 pm  

Michael,

"MichaelStaley" wrote:
It all depends on the nature of the evidence, doesn't it? For instance, I have never knowingly seen a ghost. However, I have friends who have seen such phenomena, and since I know them to be people of integrity I accept their accounts.

You're confusing a couple of ideas, here. You can accept the accounts of your friends as being truthful descriptions of experiences they had, but that's a long way from accepting that their rational conclusions as to what those experiences represented are accurate. If a friend comes to me and excitedly tells me that "I saw David Copperfield make an elephant disappear!! Seriously, one moment it was there, and then it was gone!! It was magic!!" then I don't need to start doubting his personal integrity to suspect that was he saw was a mere stage illusion, and not an example of actual disappearing elephants at all. And, indeed, if I had any "personal integrity" then one would expect me to tell him that that's what he likely saw instead of letting him wallow in his confusion out of some misguided "respect" for his beliefs. Your statement here, pushed to its conclusion, implies that we only have two choices: either doubt the integrity of our friends, or believe absolutely anything that our friends tell us for no other reason than they are, in fact, our friends, and that is an absurd dichotomy.

I find myself having to keep repeating that experience, by itself, has no explanatory power. Experience can tell you "I saw something", but once you start saying "I saw a ghost" then that is a rational conclusion you have formed, it's a rational interpretation of that experience, so doubting that conclusion does not entail the supposition that your friends are either telling you big fat porkies or are incapable of faithfully relaying to you an experience that they had. A lot of people here like to diss reason in favour of "experience", but when someone makes a statement about what their experience actually was - such as an experience of seeing "spirits" - then that is a rational conclusion, and "people of integrity" are quite capable of coming to incorrect rational conclusions as we frequently see.

"MichaelStaley" wrote:
If, however, your reference to "We" means that in your opinion I have no right to believe something without proof that I can demonstrate to a third party, then I'd suggest with all due respect that you mind your own business.

This is just strange. Nobody is asserting that you are not entitled to believe any old nonsense you choose. What you don't have is the right for your beliefs to be correct or justified by evidence, for no other reason than the fact that you do, indeed, elect to believe them.


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mika
 mika
(@mika)
Member
Joined: 11 years ago
Posts: 360
23/03/2010 4:15 pm  
"AEternitas" wrote:
By "strange and inexplicable events" I was more referring to "poltergeist" activity such as light bulbs exploding, objects moving, mysterious events and coincidences and domestic animals reacting to the "perceived" presence of spirits or perhaps even that your objective was obtained through that goetic working you had performed the other day.

As I said, just because those "strange and inexplicable events" really happened, doesn't mean your explanations for those events are accurate, especially as there is no evidence to support those explanations.

I can think of 3 non-poltergeist related reasons why a light bulb would randomly explode, and I'm not even an electrical engineer or an electrician so there are likely many more scientifically supportable explanations as well.

"AEternitas" wrote:
And so the phenomena of spirits remains a mystery and we are thus free to believe what we like as Michael said, regarding their existence based on experience, intuitive knowledge and preference or what have you.

Wow. Yes, you're free to believe whatever you want regardless of the lack of evidence, based solely on your preferences. That path, however, will take you ever further from discovering and following your "True Will", so, er, have fun with that pointless, futile endeavor.


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