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Anonymous
 Anonymous
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21/05/2015 10:41 pm  
"the_real_simon_iff" wrote:
"Los" wrote:
To  be skeptical of thoughts of fear:
"Fear not at all; fear neither men nor Fates, nor gods, nor anything. Money fear not, nor laughter of the folk folly, nor any other power in heaven or upon the earth or under the earth. Nu is your refuge as Hadit your light; and I am the strength, force, vigour, of your arms."

This again is a promise of reward when following the command. Nothing about skepticism here.

Being centred enough (for want of a better term)  to apply discernment towards one's thoughts (fears) in real -time is an applied use of scepticism. 

I await your AHA! with baited breath.

Is it coming?


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ignant666
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21/05/2015 11:44 pm  
"david" wrote:
I don't think you have  a proper understanding of the word "scepticism."  It's been spelled out clearly but you're still wayward and err, wow. 

You know (and pardon me if this has been said before), I don't think anyone would be troubled by "Thelemic skeptics" if Los and his acolytes such as david were to say that many of the ideas they advocate are in fact rooted in AC's work, and that what we might term the "scientific illuminism" thread within that work deserves more attention, that logical thinking and rigor in evaluating posited spiritual epiphanies are useful, and something AC often urged, etc. As I've pointed out, his work is rife with "skeptical" arguments ready for cherry-picking. If this were what "skeptical Thelema" consisted of, i'd sign right up.
What, i think, gets many annoyed is this insistence, as seen in young david's attempt at a schoolmasterish tone here (to disagree with Los is, per se, to be "wayward"?! to "err?!), that "Thelemic skepticism" is "clearly" the only true right way to read AL/be a Thelemite, and that the only reasons someone wouldn't agree are stupidity, or psychological problems, and that stupidity or psychological problems are the sole reasons anyone would notice that the "scientific illuminism" thread of AC's work is far from being the only one. "Science" is, after all, the "method", not the "aim"
This is simply silly; while Los et al. are right to point out that AC often says more or less what they say he says, trying to convince people able to read AC's work that they are stupid or disturbed for not playing the "No True Scotsman" game on that work isn't very effective argumentation.


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Shiva
(@shiva)
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22/05/2015 12:23 am  

"He must rely entirely upon himself,
and credit nothing whatever
but that which lies within
his own knowledge and experience."
[/align:1m40o56t]


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the_real_simon_iff
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22/05/2015 6:12 am  

93, david!

"david" wrote:
I don't think you have  a proper understanding of the word "scepticism."  It's been spelled out clearly but you're still wayward and err, wow.

Sorry, david, but that coming from someone who came like here a year ago and who seems to be constantly changing his mind or finding enlightenment depending upon youtube videos or wikipedia entries or Los' blog entries and who is so deluded as to think he is able to spell out anything clearly in the first place, doesn't really shatter my world. Not that I was giving a definition of "skepticism" anywhere on this thread, but hey what? A little Los attitude mimicry?

Why not go out and ask some of your science buddies if those new-agey Liber AL quotes do remind them of being skeptical about any of the mentioned matters (if anyone would realize the matter at all)? You are simply pretending your favourite ego-tickling Thelema explanations are already in the book where they clearly aren't. These are your (and sometimes Crowley's) definitions, and I am not saying that they are wrong, but it's your interpretation and nothing more. IT'S NOT IN THE BOOK! I said it before: I seldomly encountered a more proverbial example of "having a fancy picture" ...

Love=Law
Lutz


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jamie barter
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22/05/2015 10:49 am  

I am trying to keep up with the latest developments here regarding the “Ignore/ "I CAN'T HEAR YOU!"/ Do Not respond to” banned list.  According to Los’s answer to Nalyd’s solicitous enquiry

Reply #774 by Los on: May 20, 2015, 07:33:32 pm:

Quote from: NKB on May 18, 2015, 06:44:22 am
"Los, if you don't mind sharing, how do you feel right now?"

I'm feeling pretty good right now. But I've been away for a few days taking care of real life stuff, and I see that four pages of "discussion" (and I use that term loosely) have built up in my absence. I'm going to go through now and answer as many relevant points as I can. If there's any poster who thinks I've overlooked some important point, feel free to bring it up and I'll address it (unless you're Jamie Barter...if someone thinks he's made a good point, then repost it yourself, and I'll answer you).

I am still on Los’s blacklist, although Tao no longer is?  And judging by the lack of any reply to

Reply #767 by NKB on: May 20, 2015, 02:46:00 pm:

david, did you deliberately ignore my question to you a few posts back about those "feel-good trance-states"?

it seems that Nalyd is on david’s list somehow (but not on Los’s).

I am fairly confident that I am on both, but it would be helpful if one of them were to provide a throughly up-to-date ('your name vill also go down on zer') list of those to whom they are not going to be assed to reply, to save those concerned possible wasted time?  (Unless like myself, they may feel like going ahead and replying anyway just for the hell of it, although I have largely given up "banging on" & trying to get any further serious points across to them in this particular thread). 

Perhaps david, as second fiddle, you ought to wait until your guru follows through with his list first? 

Also, I can’t belp agreeing with Lutz’s latest observation

"the_real_simon_iff" wrote:
Sorry, david, but that coming from someone who came like here a year ago and who seems to be constantly changing his mind or finding enlightenment depending upon youtube videos or wikipedia entries or Los' blog entries and who is so deluded as to think he is able to spell out anything clearly in the first place, doesn't really shatter my world.

and also ignant666’s, that

"ignant666" wrote:
Telling Los that having a "conversation" with him is like "conversing" with a particularly obstinate brick wall and ending that "conversation" is of course entirely different than Los' infantile "I CAN"T HEAR YOU!" ban list, which is not at all Los "turning tail" in the face of arguments he can't cogently answer.

as well as

"ignant666" wrote:
[...] What, i think, gets many annoyed is this insistence, as seen in young david's attempt at a schoolmasterish tone here

Can it be that david is now trying to usurp & out-Los Los in this forum in the role of "primary" schoolmaster? 😮

N Joy


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the_real_simon_iff
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22/05/2015 11:28 am  

93!

"david" wrote:
Being centred enough (for want of a better term)  to apply discernment towards one's thoughts (fears) in real -time is an applied use of scepticism.

Thoughts = Fears? Since when? Let me guess, your interpretation (or Los', or Crowley's), but definetely not on the paper....

What's on the paper: "Do not be afraid (of anything at all), I am with you, I'll give you strength!"

Nothing about applied use of skepticism, nothing about realtime (from Erwin's or Los' blog?), only the promise that one must not fear... and guess what? "Your" interpretation (or Erwin's or Los') is not on that paper. That's all I am saying.

I am not waiting for any AHA! from your side, because I am afraid your "skepticism" cannot pierce your fixed beliefs and preconceptions.

Love=Law
Lutz


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Los
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22/05/2015 1:38 pm  
"NKB" wrote:
No, you are wrong simply by stating your relative opinions in the fashion you do. It would be more correct for you to state your relative and inaccurate opinions as "what you have stated seems wrong to me based on my limited research and experiences".

It's not "wrong" to have a different stylistic preference, which is what you're talking about here. I prefer not to pepper every last thing I say with needless caveats that are understood to be unspoken qualifications to everything said by anybody.

For example, when I'm explaining to someone that my car won't start -- as I had to do the other day -- I say, "My car won't start because something is wrong with the battery." I don't say, "In my opinion, I think it may be the case that my car won't start, based on the limited evidence available to me and my fallible reasoning about the subject; furthermore, I think in my opinion that it may be the case that the best conclusion based on evidence right now at this moment, barring the future discover of any new evidence to contradicts this account, is that there may, possibly, in some way, perhaps, be something wrong with the battery."

I don't need to make those qualifications explicit because any reasonable listener knows that when I say "My car won't start because something is wrong with the battery" I'm saying something that is my opinion, based on the best information currently available to me, and it could possibly be wrong but I think otherwise.

Stop complaining about style and start paying attention to substance.

Actually the fact is I nowhere said I see you as aggressive. So there you are wrong again. What I labeled "aggressive" was the whole proving right/wrong nature of this entire discussion.

It's not "aggressive" to note that there are correct answers and to think that one's ideas are correct. The fact that you feel this way suggests a great deal of insecurity on your part.

However, I don't feel that you have challenged my ideas in any fashion that interests me.

I'm aware that you're not interested by what's actually true.

I defined the terms based on what the terms mean at their root.

Yeah, but if other people in the conversation are using words differently than you, then you're not going to be able to have a productive conversation with them.

What [a word] means matters more than your usage.

Words don't have meanings, in the sense that you're suggesting here; they only have usages.

Dictionaries don't dictate the ultimate "meanings" of words: they record how a given word has been used over time, and they are continually updated to reflect new usages. That's why the OED will give you the fully history of the word, including its "archaic" usages. You know, "archaic": the usages that are no longer used because some other usage has come into favor.

it becomes too difficult to weed through your drivel trying to determine if you mean what you say or if I need to constantly ask for your unique definitions of all the fairly standard words you're using.

This would be a valid critique if I were using a wide variety of common words in completely different senses, but since I'm not doing not, this isn't a valid critique. I'm using the terms "skepticism" and "atheism" and "materialism" in the way in which they are used by vast numbers of people, just not everyone. That's the way it is with some terms: there are several competing usages that are current. That's why I've gone out of the way to explain how I'm using them, too. Yet, even after having this explained to you, you are reluctant to discuss the substance of the ideas.

Here, I'll even give you an opportunity to have a conversation about the substance: I'm an atheist in the sense that I don't accept the existence of any gods (and I'll extend that to say that I don't accept the existence of any non-corporeal intelligences). As I've been explaining, I'm not claiming that there *aren't* any non-corporeal intelligences, and I'm not claiming I can *prove* that there aren't any non-corporeal intelligences -- in the same way that I can't *prove* that there aren't leprechauns. I just lack belief because, after surveying the evidence that people have presented for thinking that there are such beings, I've concluded that the evidence is (laughably) insufficient. If you disagree, I'd be interested in hearing what evidence you think is sufficient.

when it comes down to it one's personal experiences remain a private matter.

Sure. But what you claim in public about your personal experiences isn't private. And -- importantly, since we're talking about Thelema in this thread -- Thelema requires one to verify (for oneself) one's own personal experiences. For example, in order to practice Thelema, you have to be able to distinguish your True Will from your desires. Even though you're the only one who experiences those phenomena -- entirely in your personal experience -- there are still objective standards that allow you to demonstrate, to yourself, the difference between the Will and the desires.

What did I say exactly that leads you to suspect that I distrust thought?

Your dismissal of our conversation on the grounds that it is taking place too much "in the head," and your clarification that by this phrase you meant emphasis in the conversation on the "cold, pure intellect."

You can't make an argument by adding adjectives like "cold" and "pure" to other words. What you're implying is that our conversation -- which, like all conversations, deals with concepts and ideas generated and evaluated by the intellect -- should not have an emphasis on the intellect. There's really not a charitable way to interpret this: you're essentially complaining that I think too hard, and I strongly suspect that you're the type who would complain that I don't give equal weight to your precious little feelings and the stories you tell yourself about aliens "communicating" to you.

You're welcome not to think very hard about the subjects in which you claim to be interested in, but it's really not an effective approach to a conversation.


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Los
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22/05/2015 1:42 pm  
"ignant666" wrote:
Telling Los that having a "conversation" with him is like "conversing" with a particularly obstinate brick wall and ending that "conversation" is of course entirely different than Los' infantile "I CAN"T HEAR YOU!" ban list, which is not at all Los "turning tail" in the face of arguments he can't cogently answer.

I don't have a "ban list." I just don't read or reply to anything that "Jamie Barter" says because the guy is useless, in my estimation.

If you think he makes a good point somewhere, then you make the point and I'll reply to you. I'm not running from any arguments, like some people I could name.


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the_real_simon_iff
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22/05/2015 1:52 pm  

93!

",well, not a real quote from: Los" wrote:
I don't need to make those qualifications explicit because any reasonable listener knows that when I say "I just don't read or reply to anything that "Jamie Barter" says because the guy is useless" I actually have a "ban list".

Love=Law
Lutz


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NKB
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22/05/2015 2:14 pm  

Los, I won't have time until next week to really address what you said but just real quick, where in this discussion did I say anything about aliens communicating with me? Or make any claims about my own experiences for that matter? You seem to keep implying that there are claims I've made that need backing up.


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Los
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22/05/2015 2:28 pm  
"the_real_simon_iff" wrote:
Let me first say that with much of the verses you quote and interpret I am in agreement. I wouldn't dare to say that skepticism is a bad thing. But it's not the only way that leads to finding your True Will. I just don't agree that it is the "proper" way to practice Thelema.

Well, maybe this point can bring us back to the opening of the thread, where I asserted that the only way to discover one's True Will is to observe it. In order to observe it, one has to be able to distinguish the True Will -- or, more accurately, identify and peer "beneath" the distorting lenses of the mind.

What other way do you have in mind?

"Los" wrote:
Well, for starters, the central point of the Book is expressed as "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law," not "Do what thou randomly guess is thy will shall be the whole of the Law."

But nowhere it says "Apply strict skepticism to find your will and then do it."

Look, I'm not going to bother going through line-by-line here because your point is virtually the same for each quote: the Book doesn't use the word "skepticism."

And my response is that the American Constitution doesn't use the phrase "separation of church and state." It doesn't matter whether a certain word appears in a text: what matters is whether the idea appears there.

This is a common theme from my conversation with NKB: it's the ideas that count, not the specific terminology used to express the ideas.

[Thelema]demands a complete rejection and overthrowing of the moral standards

Sure. Maybe we're just talking past each other here because to me, to be properly skeptical of moral standards is to overthrow them: when one investigates the matter, one comes to see that there is no reason to think that "moral standards" are anything but arbitrary creations of the mind, not extant "things" in reality that are ultimately binding.

The book reeks much more of claims about the prophet and the superiority of its authors and weird beetle rituals and the victory of Thelemites than of skepticism.

My impression is that the Book has much more practical instruction than weirdness. Perhaps the ratio is different than I recall.

That doesn't mean that one should not be skeptical about many of ideas of the old aeon, but again: saying this is wrong and this is right, is not the same as being skeptical about what's right.

I don't agree that the Book tells us what is "wrong" and "right." It establishes that there is only one law: Do what thou wilt.

The Book never says that it's "right" to do your Will, and it never says that it's "wrong" to do otherwise. It also doesn't identify specific actions as "right" or "wrong": and boy, would it be stupid if the Book said that, since the only law is Do what thou wilt.

So, to use one example, the Book never says that chastity is "wrong." It says, "let all chaste women be utterly despised among you!" Now that is phrased as a command -- or, if we're going to be really technical, we might read it not as a command to despise such women. It's a statement that such women will be despised and a command to the reader to "let" that despising take place.

But "commands" can't really be seen as such in a text whose central message is Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law. As far as I'm concerned, the only sensible reading of the text is that the Will of an individual trumps any and all "commands" anywhere. How ridiculous would it be for a book to say that the only law is to do your Will....oh, and also the following list of commands. No, the Book places no obligations on the reader (other than Do what thou wilt, which the reader was going to do anyway). Passages where the Book "commands" something -- that is, where a verse is written in the imperative mood -- are best interpreted as saying that the reader can do this if it is in accord with his or her Will.

The fact of the matter is that society's notions of "chastity" -- notions that come with a double standard, one for women and one for men -- are bullshit. People who are in touch with reality -- who aren't distracted by the "moral" ideas that they've been taught -- will see through this bullshit and probably will despise at least the idea of chastity. Many probably will despise people who are chaste...and, thanks to the sexism of our culture, they'll probably have extra amounts of disdain for women who are chaste (especially if they're the sort of assholes who can't get laid to begin with and then go around blaming "frigid" and "gold-digging" women instead of taking a good long hard look at themselves).

But maybe some people won't. Maybe they'll have a good friend who is woman afflicted by ideas she has been taught about chastity. And maybe they won't despise her. Maybe their Will is to continue to be her friend. In that case, their response to this verse should be, "fuck what The Book of the Law says. I'm doing my Will."

Basically, anyone who reads The Book of the Law and comes away with a list of commands to follow is reading the whole thing entirely wrong.

Thelema to me is only about the True Will and the complete freedom for every individual.

Well, obviously. But simply saying "Do what thou wilt" is spectacularly unhelpful because that Law needs to be explained. True Will doesn't mean do whatever you want: there's a whole philosophy in which it is incorporated, and the correct implementation of that philosophy demands that the individual employ skepticism.

Remember, what we call Thelema really derives from Crowley's interpretation of the Book of the Law. The philosophy, as Crowley explained it, requires skepticism. Now, as a side note, you asked me -- or somebody asked me -- where the Book of the Law itself requires skepticism, and I pointed out all of the verses that pretty clearly point to a need for an individual to regard his or her own ideas about the self, morality, and the universe in a skeptical way. It is on the back of verses like the ones I mentioned that Crowley developed a philosophy that is, at its core, skeptical.

I'm in a hurry, so my English is probably as bad as it is when I am not proofreading...

Oh, please. Your English is better than that of a lot of native speakers.


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Michael Staley
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MANIO - it's all in the egg
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22/05/2015 2:29 pm  
"Los" wrote:
I'm not running from any arguments, like some people I could name.

When next taking a break from thinking too hard, perhaps you could name one or two of these fleet-footed ones.


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ignant666
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22/05/2015 2:32 pm  
"Los" wrote:
"ignant666" wrote:
Telling Los that having a "conversation" with him is like "conversing" with a particularly obstinate brick wall and ending that "conversation" is of course entirely different than Los' infantile "I CAN"T HEAR YOU!" ban list, which is not at all Los "turning tail" in the face of arguments he can't cogently answer.

I don't have a "ban list." I just don't read or reply to anything that "Jamie Barter" says because the guy is useless, in my estimation.

If you think he makes a good point somewhere, then you make the point and I'll reply to you. I'm not running from any arguments, like some people I could name.

You have a short memory- from a few pages back:

"Los" wrote:
"ignant666" wrote:
I wonder if Los plans to answer the question Tao has posed so directly?

I don't intend to speak to him [sic]. If you want an answer to it, ignant, you ask the question.

JB and Tao are far from the only examples over the years; you once told me i was on your "do not reply" list (in the course of replying to my post).


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Los
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22/05/2015 2:33 pm  
"the_real_simon_iff" wrote:
93!

",well, not a real quote from: Los" wrote:
I don't need to make those qualifications explicit because any reasonable listener knows that when I say "I just don't read or reply to anything that "Jamie Barter" says because the guy is useless" I actually have a "ban list".

Love=Law
Lutz

Alright, I laughed.

When I said I don't have a "ban list," I was objecting to the implication that there are a wide variety of users to whom I do not respond. That's not the case. I've simply stopped conversing with Barter, primarily because I said I was going to do so, and because I actually live up to my word.


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Los
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22/05/2015 2:42 pm  
"ignant" wrote:
You have a short memory- from a few pages back:

"Los" wrote:
"ignant666" wrote:
I wonder if Los plans to answer the question Tao has posed so directly?

I don't intend to speak to him [sic]. If you want an answer to it, ignant, you ask the question.

Oh, right. Forgot about him.

Well, Barter is the only one whose posts I don't read and whose posts I will not respond to again. I may in the future choose to respond to Tao again. We'll see.

you once told me i was on your "do not reply" list (in the course of replying to my post).

If I'm remembering correctly, I told you that I had mostly decided to ignore you except for when you say something that allows me to make a good point that is instructional to others. That is indeed a valuable function you fulfill, ignant. At no point did I speak of a "list" because there's not one. I told Barter I'm done with him, and I am. Everybody else, I speak to when it pleases me.

Anyway, I'm sure everybody finds this part of the conversation absolutely fascinating, but astute readers will notice that the conversation is turning to "let's talk about Los and Los' posting habits," and not ideas.


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Los
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22/05/2015 2:49 pm  
"NKB" wrote:
Los, I won't have time until next week to really address what you said

Take your time. Whenever it's convenient for you.

By the way, if you should ever make a post and I miss it -- which does happen from time to time -- feel free to drop me a private message to remind me to answer it.

but just real quick, where in this discussion did I say anything about aliens communicating with me?

You didn't say it in this discussion. You've talked about it over on the Typhonian forums (which I read on occasion for entertainment), and you've included a quotation from your "Communication from the Architects via the LAM Gateway" in your signature.

Based on the information at my disposal, it doesn't seem unreasonable to extrapolate that you think you've actually been in "communication" with a non-human intelligence. If I am incorrect and you are actually not of the opinion that you've been in communication with non-human intelligences, then I'll happily stand corrected.


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jamie barter
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22/05/2015 2:52 pm  
"Los" wrote:
"ignant666" wrote:
Telling Los that having a "conversation" with him is like "conversing" with a particularly obstinate brick wall and ending that "conversation" is of course entirely different than Los' infantile "I CAN"T HEAR YOU!" ban list, which is not at all Los "turning tail" in the face of arguments he can't cogently answer.

I don't have a "ban list." I just don't read or reply to anything that "Jamie Barter" says because the guy is useless, in my estimation.

If you think he makes a good point somewhere, then you make the point and I'll reply to you. I'm not running from any arguments, like some people I could name.

Ouch! Los has cut me to the quick here.  I notice no reasons of any kind are given, and only one word offered by way of any explanation: “useless”.  This simple adjective carries no scientific weight with it at all; in fact it’s no more than one person’s value judgement - which I judge in turn to be rather idiotic.  But there you go: name-calling is the last refuge of those with really nothing else productive to say and anyone with half a brain can see what’s really going on. This is how we are getting nowhere but sailing around in ever increasing circles.  Nice here though, isn’t it!?

I did wonder what the exact point was when Los no longer deigned me worthy to answer & I got myself onto this “ban list” which he now denies having but which previously included Tao and Gnosomai.  Without bothering to trawl for it, I think it must have been around the time I poked fun at him about substituting his settee for the Sun in his observation of Liber Resh and queried the gross hypocrisy of using his avatar name - way back in this actual thread, in fact.

david of course has merely followed Los’s example with the ban list, rather than showing any intelligence on his own which he does ocasionally display when he can wrench himself away from his 'evil genius'.  And I suspect the reason he didn’t want to answer NKB’s query (originally from Reply #754) was that he was frightened that by so doing (and expanding upon his (rash!) statement there that there is a place in scepticism for “feel-good trance-states”) he would probably put his foot in it with Los somehow & thereby queer his pitch.

I see there has been a flurry of posts concerning me from Los since I started framing this reply and gotten distracted by somebody.  I'm flattered, boyo!  Keep it up.

TuLiYu for now
и~∫ºλ


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ignant666
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22/05/2015 3:07 pm  
"Los" wrote:
Oh, right. Forgot about him.

So- a list after all? What about Gnosomai, or do you still claim (on zero evidence) that Gnosomai and Tao (a female girl who is a woman) are mutual sock-puppets?

"Los" wrote:
If I'm remembering correctly, I told you that I had mostly decided to ignore you except for when you say something that allows me to make a good point that is instructional to others. That is indeed a valuable function you fulfill, ignant.

So gratifying to have a pat on the head, in the course of you admitting that you do indeed have a "do not reply" list, and also fail to not reply to people on that list.

"Los" wrote:
Anyway, I'm sure everybody finds this part of the conversation absolutely fascinating, but astute readers will notice that the conversation is turning to "let's talk about Los and Los' posting habits," and not ideas.

Fair enough, except that when you pose as the apostle of logic and reason bravely facing down the superstitious masses of non-skeptical Thelemites it is fair play to call you on your failure to live up to the standards you set for others to be worthy of your attention.

Do you intend to reply to my recent point that "skeptical Thelema"/"scientific illuminism" is indeed one strand (and a very important one, that distinguishes Thelema from prior spiritual practices) among many in Thelema/AC's work, but that to play "No True Scotsman" with Thelema/AC's work, and declare all that fits with "Losianity" to be "true Thelema", and all that does not fit to be "not Thelema" but rather "AC's occult delusions/personal bees-in-the-bonnet/[etc., etc., etc. as needed]", is both intellectually dishonest and unpersuasive to persons able to read that work for themselves?

Or is this perhaps not one of the occasions on which i "say something that allows [you] to make a good point that is instructional to others" [who are, i am sure, appropriately grateful to be the recipients of such wisdom]?


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Los
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22/05/2015 3:39 pm  
"ignant666" wrote:
So- a list after all?

Alright, you've changed my mind. Let's call it a list.

I have an informal ignore list with exactly one person on it, and on which other people occasionally appear for a time, as it so pleases me.

Fair enough, except that when you pose as the apostle of logic and reason bravely facing down the superstitious masses of non-skeptical Thelemites it is fair play to call you on your failure to live up to the standards you set for others to be worthy of your attention.

Setting aside my disagreement with how you characterize me above -- a characterization that says more about you and your issues than anything else -- what standards do I set for others that I don't live up to? We established above that I respond to people whenever it pleases me and ignore them whenever it pleases me. I extend that same right to everyone else.

Do you intend to reply to my recent point that "skeptical Thelema"/"scientific illuminism" is indeed one strand (and a very important one, that distinguishes Thelema from prior spiritual practices) among many in Thelema/AC's work, but that to play "No True Scotsman" with Thelema/AC's work, and declare all that fits with "Losianity" to be "true Thelema", and all that does not fit to be "not Thelema" but rather "AC's occult delusions/personal bees-in-the-bonnet/[etc., etc., etc. as needed]", is both intellectually dishonest and unpersuasive to persons able to read that work for themselves?

Or is this perhaps not one of the occasions on which i "say something that allows [you] to make a good point that is instructional to others" [who are, i am sure, appropriately grateful to be the recipients of such wisdom]?

Yeah, this is the kind of thing I would just ignore because I've addressed it over and over again when talking to you in the past.

I addressed it earlier on this very thread: let's say that Newton had declared that the Christian God revealed Calculus to him. In that hypothetical world, someone could correctly point out: 1) that there is insufficient evidence of the Christian God and no reason to think Newton's story is true, 2) that the usefulness of Calculus is independent of the claims of its origin, 3) that Calculus is an entirely mathematical system that has nothing to do with gods and is unconnected to the story about its supposed origin, and 4) that Newton may have had all kinds of God-beliefs but that these beliefs and their veracity are separate from Calculus.

In fact, let's say in a hypothetical universe, Newton had always worn special robes and said prayers when doing Calculus. In that hypothetical world, one would also be correct to point out that there is no need to wear robes when doing Calculus and that it's actually a lot more convenient for most people not to wear robes while doing Calculus and that it's not a good thing to be more concerned about wearing the right robe than doing the calculations correctly.

And none of the above would in any way be a "No True Scotsman" fallacy. You keep accusing me of committing a "No True Scotsman" fallacy when I point out that Thelema is distinct from occultism, but you never justify the accusation. In the same way that Calculus is distinct from Christianity -- even in a hypothetical world where Newton claimed to have received Calculus from God and where Newton did Calculus while praying -- Thelema is distinct from Crowley's personal beliefs, including his ideas about occultism.

If you can actually make an argument for your position, then fine. But just saying over and over and over and over again that I'm committing a "fallacy" is going to get you ignored. And for good cause.


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the_real_simon_iff
(@the_real_simon_iff)
Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 1836
22/05/2015 4:08 pm  

93, Los!

Hopefully you do not regard me as so stupid that my only argument is "the word skepticism is not in the book, therefore it has nothing to do with it".

"Los" wrote:
This is a common theme from my conversation with NKB: it's the ideas that count, not the specific terminology used to express the ideas.

Yes, but the ideas are in the reader's mind. On the surface Liber AL is one apocalyptic battle cry against Victorianism etc. Of course, reading more of Crowley, especially his (unpublished during his lifetime) comments, sheds quite some light on what is (probably) actually meant by this "poem". And of course the "scientific method" and "skepticism" are thoroughly advised by him. But Crowley also advocated quite a lot of ideas that would not stand up to "your kind" of skepticism, but obviously stood up to "his kind". And if that helps one to find his True Will, the goal of Thelema is reached. And that's all there is to do. Find your True Will. For all we know it is a fact that he had different ideas about what the True Will is than you (not completely different, but nonetheless in parts different), he had different ideas about unknown methods of communication, and he had different ideas about the existence of some higher intelligence wherever hidden. You may think he was wrong about that, others may not think so and might be as satisfied as he was with the evidence, even if it doesn't stand up to your "skepticism". But anyway, Crowley's conclusions where not the same as yours and many might think he is the more important authority, especially if personal experiences amplify "his" views.

"Los" wrote:
Sure. Maybe we're just talking past each other here

I do not think so.

"Los" wrote:
because to me, to be properly skeptical of moral standards is to overthrow them

Yes, but simply overthrowing them would have the same effect. Not that I think that this is wise, but the effect is the same.

"Los" wrote:
when one investigates the matter, one comes to see that there is no reason to think that "moral standards" are anything but arbitrary creations of the mind, not extant "things" in reality that are ultimately binding.

Absolutely...

"Los" wrote:
My impression is that the Book has much more practical instruction than weirdness. Perhaps the ratio is different than I recall.

Unfortunately for absolute newbies (and even more unfortunately sometimes for "insiders" also) the book is (in my experience) really "weird"...

"Los" wrote:
I don't agree that the Book tells us what is "wrong" and "right." It establishes that there is only one law: Do what thou wilt.

Maybe. But on the surface - that's what I am talking about - it also doesn't say to think hard about what it condemns, it just does.

"Los" wrote:
True Will doesn't mean do whatever you want: there's a whole philosophy in which it is incorporated, and the correct implementation of that philosophy demands that the individual employ skepticism.

But you don't get that - apart from the "delivered from the lust of result" stuff - by only reading this one book. And it seems obvious that there are different shades of skepticism to be employed to reach that end.

And that's all I want to say. We don't have to follow your skepticism, we have to follow ourselves. Some might be in agreement with Crowley, who was convinced that Liber AL and its reception is enough prove for currently unknown ways of communication and forms of intelligence, some might be in agreement with you, that as long as science hasn't prove that, it's rational to dismiss it. But both partys are perfecty able to enter this adventure of finding one's Will.

Have to go.

Love=Law
Lutz


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Los
 Los
(@los)
Member
Joined: 12 years ago
Posts: 2195
22/05/2015 4:28 pm  
"the_real_simon_iff" wrote:
On the surface Liber AL is one apocalyptic battle cry against Victorianism etc. Of course, reading more of Crowley, especially his (unpublished during his lifetime) comments, sheds quite some light on what is (probably) actually meant by this "poem".

Yes. To be clear, when I say that Thelema is, at heart, a skeptical system, I'm talking about Thelema as invented by Crowley, based on his interpretation of The Book of the Law.

I'm obviously not saying that The Book of the Law contains statements of instruction as clear cut as what I was saying in the first few posts of this thread. But you asked me where the Book demands skepticism, so I pointed you to a number of verses that, in order to intelligently put into practice, one has to adopt an attitude of skepticism.

But Crowley also advocated quite a lot of ideas that would not stand up to "your kind" of skepticism, but obviously stood up to "his kind".

While I agree that he held beliefs that I don't, I wouldn't chalk this up to different "kinds" of skepticism. Skepticism is about apportioning one's beliefs to the evidence. Where Crowley and I disagree is on the question of whether there is sufficient evidence to justify believing in certain things, such as preterhuman intelligence.

He was evidently convinced that the evidence was sufficient, and I don't think the evidence is anywhere close to sufficient.

And if that helps one to find his True Will, the goal of Thelema is reached. And that's all there is to do. Find your True Will.

Sure, but what specifically do you think "helps one to find his True Will" that I would disagree with? We've established that Crowley believed in preternatural intelligences, and I don't think he was justified in holding that belief. But he never claimed that believing in preternatural intelligences "helps one to find his True Will."

My point -- again -- is that discovering the True Will is the process of learning to pay attention to it, beneath the distorting tendencies of the mind. I based this idea on Crowley's writings, spanning his entire career of writing about Thelema. If you have some different idea, then I'd like to hear it.

For all we know it is a fact that [Crowley] had different ideas about what the True Will is than you (not completely different, but nonetheless in parts different), he had different ideas about unknown methods of communication, and he had different ideas about the existence of some higher intelligence wherever hidden. You may think he was wrong about that, others may not think so and might be as satisfied as he was with the evidence, even if it doesn't stand up to your "skepticism". But anyway, Crowley's conclusions where not the same as yours and many might think he is the more important authority, especially if personal experiences amplify "his" views.

Sure, but a few comments: I don't think Crowley had a substantially different understanding of True Will than I do; I do think Crowley had very different ideas than I do about two unrelated subjects: unknown means of communication and the existence of some higher intelligence. I also think Crowley was wrong about those ideas, and I don't think Crowley is any kind of special "authority" on those subjects, any more than the Pope is an authority on God telling him things. I do think Crowley is an authority on Thelema, by virtue of the fact that he created it.

Maybe [the Book doesn't tell us what is "right" or "wrong"]. But on the surface - that's what I am talking about - it also doesn't say to think hard about what it condemns, it just does.

Well, okay, sure. It doesn't literally say, "Spend some time carefully and skeptically evaluating your ideas about the world," but I was discussing how the practical implementation of much of the Book requires a skeptical attitude. I hope we would agree that it's a serious mistake for someone to accept a claim or to "despise" someone based merely on what it says in some "Holy Book."

We don't have to follow your skepticism, we have to follow ourselves.

It's not "my" skepticism: it's the process of apportioning belief to evidence. And in order to follow ourselves, we have to be able to distinguish what we actually want to do (True Will) from what we think we want to do. The way to do that is to be skeptical of our ideas about ourselves...and in the process, skeptical of all of our ideas as well.


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ignant666
(@ignant666)
Tangin
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 3150
22/05/2015 4:51 pm  

Tao (a mother), Gnosomai, and JB, and sometimes me, is a "ban list" of three (and sometimes four), not one.

As to your proposed analogy between AC and Newton, this  might hold water if Newton were generally considered only an occultist and mystic, and someone wanted to point out he also dabbled in math.

Your claim is that minor lyric poet AC, generally known as an occultist, magician, and mystic, who considered himself a "Prophet" as a result of a book channeled to him by a "spaceman" (that you hold in high esteem for reasons that are not entirely clear), and who wrote voluminously on religion, divination, evoking sprits to visible appearance, etc., and claimed to have received real-world verification of messages from "goblins" on many occasions, nonetheless, in that book that he wrote (since there are no such things as "spacemen") in pseudo-Biblical prose, espoused ("clearly") a hyper-rational, atheistic, and materialist world-view and set of practices as the sole path to "Will", having attained authority to say this despite despite his own considerable failure to pursue such a course?
Also, that in paring away all the voluminous writings on this "Prophet's" personal belief in "spacemen", "goblins" etc., and preserving only those parts of his work that support your case, you are merely preserving the "scientific"  baby (per your Newton "analogy"), and discarding the "occult" bathwater?


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Anonymous
 Anonymous
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22/05/2015 5:16 pm  
"david" wrote:

I await your AHA! with baited breath.

Is it coming?

Oops that should be "bated breath" for grammar- Nazi patrol. 


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Tiger
(@tiger)
Member
Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 1584
22/05/2015 5:24 pm  

“It is not to be wondered that the magic strain to which P. had been placed during the last seven months should have long since blossomed into flowers of weird and wonderful beauty. And so we find, as far back as the beginning of November 1899, the commencement of a series of extraordinary visions as wild and involved as many of those of Blake or St. Francis.

But before entering upon these visions, it will be necessary to explain that by a vision we mean as definite a psychological state and as certain and actual a fact to the mental eye, as the view of a landscape is considered to be to the physical eye itself. And so when we have occasion to write "he saw an angel," it is to be taken that we mean by it as absolute a fact as if we had written "he saw a mountain," or "he saw a cow." It, however, is not to be accepted that by this we lay down that either angels or cows exist apart from ourselves, they may or they may not; but it is to be taken that angels, and mountains and cows are ideas of equal value in their own specific spheres: the astral and the material; and that they have their proper place in existence, whatever existence may be, and that every experience, normal, abnormal, subnormal or supernormal, whether treated as an illusion or a fact, is of equal value so long as it is conditioned in Time; and that a dream is of as real a nature as awakenment, but on a different plane in existence, the conditions of which can alone be judged and measured by experimental science.”

The Seer pg 295 The Equinox Vol 1 No 2

We all know how well Los reads Crowely


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Anonymous
 Anonymous
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22/05/2015 5:42 pm  
"the_real_simon_iff" wrote:
Thoughts = Fears? Since when? Let me guess, your interpretation (or Los', or Crowley's), but definetely not on the paper....

What's on the paper: "Do not be afraid (of anything at all), I am with you, I'll give you strength!"

Nothing about applied use of skepticism, nothing about realtime (from Erwin's or Los' blog?), only the promise that one must not fear... and guess what? "Your" interpretation (or Erwin's or Los') is not on that paper. That's all I am saying.

I am not waiting for any AHA! from your side, because I am afraid your "skepticism" cannot pierce your fixed beliefs and preconceptions.

Love=Law
Lutz

I find it interesting that Descartes, the ultimate pioneer- rationalist, one of the major fathers of modern scientific method, proposed that the seat of the human soul was in the (what Hindus call) ajna centre (the third eye, so called).  Isn't it traditionally held that meditation opens the third eye?  Think about that.     

Then again maybe he just dissected a brain and saw something that looked like an eyeball in the centre.

"the_real_simon_iff" wrote:
93, david!

"david" wrote:
I don't think you have  a proper understanding of the word "scepticism."  It's been spelled out clearly but you're still wayward and err, wow.

Sorry, david, but that coming from someone who came like here a year ago and who seems to be constantly changing his mind or finding enlightenment depending upon youtube videos or wikipedia entries or Los' blog entries and who is so deluded as to think he is able to spell out anything clearly in the first place, doesn't really shatter my world. Not that I was giving a definition of "skepticism" anywhere on this thread, but hey what? A little Los attitude mimicry?

Why not go out and ask some of your science buddies if those new-agey Liber AL quotes do remind them of being skeptical about any of the mentioned matters (if anyone would realize the matter at all)? You are simply pretending your favourite ego-tickling Thelema explanations are already in the book where they clearly aren't. These are your (and sometimes Crowley's) definitions, and I am not saying that they are wrong, but it's your interpretation and nothing more. IT'S NOT IN THE BOOK! I said it before: I seldomly encountered a more proverbial example of "having a fancy picture" ...

Love=Law
Lutz

Constantly changing my mind?  No, that's actually BS.  Try again.  You're an anti-youtube and anti-wiki snob?  I get the impression that you're making sad personal attacks because you don't like dealing with the substance of what I have to say. 

Why react like that?  Honestly, I am not being sarcastic, I genuinely thought you would have an epiphany and be full of cheer that you finally realized what scepticism is and how it related to Thelema and Liber Al. 

A few questions for you and if you have another tantrum then I'm going to view you as a worthy candidate for my idiot list.

Have you ever meditated?

Have you ever watched your thoughts pass by? 

Is this similar to what a jury is supposed to do when given displays of evidence and facts by lawyers in the dock i.e. adopt impartiality? 

Does scepticism involve such impartiality?

Am I about to bang my head against the wall ......again?     


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Michael Staley
(@michael-staley)
MANIO - it's all in the egg
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 4065
22/05/2015 6:07 pm  
"david" wrote:
A few questions for you and if you have another tantrum then I'm going to view you as a worthy candidate for my idiot list.

Please, can we just stop this bloody name-calling?

I know that some of us do it from time to time, but the forum guidelines request that we refrain from ad hominem attacks. What's wrong with courtesy, david? Do you consider it un-Nietzsche or something?


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Anonymous
 Anonymous
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Joined: 1 second ago
Posts: 0
22/05/2015 6:13 pm  
"Michael Staley" wrote:
"david" wrote:
A few questions for you and if you have another tantrum then I'm going to view you as a worthy candidate for my idiot list.

Please, can we just stop this bloody name-calling?

I know that some of us do it from time to time, but the forum guidelines request that we refrain from ad hominem attacks. What's wrong with courtesy, david? Do you consider it un-Nietzsche or something?

Cherry picking the 100s of times I have faced personal attacks with dignity, silence and impartiality, Michael?  I know your motives.  Besides anyone could see that my tone was in good fun.  I actually said I was optimistic about him being in good cheer.

Maybe you'd like to join in?  How about you?

Have you ever meditated?

Have you ever watched your thoughts pass by? 

Is this similar to what a jury is supposed to do when given displays of evidence and facts by lawyers in the dock i.e. adopt impartiality? 

Does scepticism involve such impartiality?

 


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lashtal
(@lashtal)
Owner and Editor Admin
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 5326
22/05/2015 6:40 pm  

You're boring me now.

Locked

Owner and Editor
LAShTAL


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