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 Anonymous
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"Patriarch156" wrote:
I am reminded of Crowley in MWT where the immediate chapter after declaring that Thelema as a doctrine must not disagree with the known facts of science, goes into a vitriolic attack on that same Science's falsification of vitalism. He had after all very good reasons for thinking their falsification were unfounded as it did not conform to his anecdotal eating experiences during his mountain expeditions lol

Ah, yes, the old weasel. And then he has the hide to bang on about moral duty to the race, honesty for posterity's sake, etc.!


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 Anonymous
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Crowley was trained as an engineer and chemist, to some degree.
Also his insistence that empirical tests be done, even if the criteria he used for Evidence were a bit strange, was a scientific approach. Also he insisted that the results of such tests be taken with skepticism as to the actual cause of the phenomena, including a willingness to attribute the spirits to parts of the brain, rather than to spirits and to interpret the supposed powers of these spirits to metaphors for less mysterious abilities.

Yes, Crowley insisted on vitalism and he was reluctant to accept Darwin over Lemark, his science was shot through with desire to believe in superstitious explanations and holding false science of his day and some just plain misunderstanding of the science of his day. However, Alchemy was full of superstitions that they practitioners believed to be hard science, but over time Alchemy was refined into both chemistry and psychology. Psychology still has a ways to go before it is as cleansed of superstition of Chemistry, perhaps an Alchemical Transmutation of the field is in order.

In any event, there is no need to accept Crowley's interpretation that Aiwass and such events were supernatural, they very well could have been the result of a drug state on a brilliant mind. That is not really the issue.

Behind all the poetry and spiritualist nonsense Thelema has a true science, and the rituals certainly do effect the brain in interesting ways that deserve deeper study.

Thelema is perfectly viable as a non-spiritualist system of scientifically ordering personal psychology and inter-personal relations as well as finding the balance between personal and impersonal.

At the heart of BoL, is a formula for the science that studies how the individual part relates to the larger whole. Be that the human in society, the knot in a net, or a point to the plane.


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 Anonymous
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I do not see the need for the insistence on labeling the concept of a Praeter Human Intelligence as "supernatural." If intelligences that exist independantly of a physical vehicle are a reality, then they are perfectly natural, as is anything else.
There is no sucj thing as the supernatural.


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 Anonymous
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"name538" wrote:
Also his insistence that empirical tests be done, even if the criteria he used for Evidence were a bit strange, was a scientific approach.

It's called an emphasis on science, at best, as I see it.

"name538" wrote:
In any event, there is no need to accept Crowley's interpretation that Aiwass and such events were supernatural, they very well could have been the result of a drug state on a brilliant mind. That is not really the issue.

Actually, it is the business of Aiwass and his ilk that was of far greater concern to Crowley, imo, than politics, and he considered the nature of Aiwass to be evidenced by science. Are you sure that we are reading the same Crowley, name538?


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 Anonymous
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"AEternitas" wrote:
I do not see the need for the insistence on labeling the concept of a Praeter Human Intelligence as "supernatural." If intelligences that exist independantly of a physical vehicle are a reality, then they are perfectly natural, as is anything else.
There is no sucj thing as the supernatural.

It just makes it much easier to ridicule, AEternitas.


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 Anonymous
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There are no "intelligences" that exist without a brains. It is an absurd notion, it's like saying there exists a computer that can do math that exists without a physical device of any kind. That is just insane.

Much like re-incarnation. That say a human being, all the brain's processing power, life time of memories etc, would be passed on to say a butterfly is stupid. First because the brain-machine IS the person there is nothing to exist outside of the brain. Second, if a butterfly was to mirror the function of an adult human brain, than would be like saying that you stored the entire world internet, not only the memory of all computers but all the processing ability of those computers, in a common Biro's click mechanism. That click can only poorly simulate one transistor.

There is no intelligence (Processing activity of a brain) without a brain.


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 Anonymous
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I think Name538 needs to read a bit more of Crowley's works.


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Azidonis
(@azidonis)
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93,

Praeter
Preter- Pre"ter- [L. praeter past, beyond, originally a compar. of prae before. See For, prep.]
A prefix signifying past, by, beyond, more than; as, preter- mission, a permitting to go by; preternatural, beyond or more than is natural. [Written also pr[ae]ter.]

Human
Human Hu"man, n. A human being. [Colloq.]

Intelligence
Intelligence In*tel"li*gence, n. [F. intelligence, L. intelligentia, intellegentia. See Intelligent.]
1. The act or state of knowing; the exercise of the understanding. [1913 Webster]
___________

Essentially, a form of intelligence that is "beyond or more than natural" in comparison to human intelligence.
___________

Supernatural
Supernatural Su`per*nat"u*ral, a. [Pref. super- + natural: cf. OF. supernaturel, F. surnaturel.]
Being beyond, or exceeding, the power or laws of nature; miraculous.
___________

By defnition "praeter-human" and "supernatural" are two completely different concepts.

93 93/93


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
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Yes, he used Aiwass to legitimize the book of the law to people who believe in the authority of spirits.
He pointed to the kabbalah cyphers as proof to people who believe complex cyphers prove legitimacy.
He pointed to the beauty of the prose, to people who believe based on poetic ability.
He pointed to his adept occult ability, to people who accept his grade as authority.
He pointed to vague prophecies that he claimed foretold the world wars, to those who accept prophecy.
He pointed to the science and philosophy applicable to ethics, to those who believe based on that.

Basically Crowely used every means possible to convince people to accept this book, appealing to every sort of rational and irrational mind.


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 Anonymous
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How can something be More than natural, and yet be within the scope of the natural.

Aiwass, as Crowley admits, is a state of mind, outside of normal awareness that Crowley had, he said Aiwass may very well be the voice of his unconscious mind. But it seems unlikely to his normal reasoning awareness that it could be so, but he does not discount it.

Praeter-normal consciousness rather than Praeter-natural.


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Azidonis
(@azidonis)
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93,

"name538" wrote:
How can something be More than natural, and yet be within the scope of the natural.

Aiwass, as Crowley admits, is a state of mind, outside of normal awareness that Crowley had, he said Aiwass may very well be the voice of his unconscious mind. But it seems unlikely to his normal reasoning awareness that it could be so, but he does not discount it.

Praeter-normal consciousness rather than Praeter-natural.

Noc,

How would you define an "AHA!" moment?

93 93/93


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
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During your spiritual quest, you may encounter periods of gnosis/psychosis, moments of uncertainty, and this is where you must "know thyself" and understand that you're dealing with your own shadow. Self-knowledge is the "forbidden fruit." It is the abyss, the twilight zone, the shadow realm of the unconscious, hidden by the dark side of the moon.


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 Anonymous
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"name538" wrote:
Basically Crowely used every means possible to convince people to accept this book, appealing to every sort of rational and irrational mind.

That Beast does have a certain broad appeal. 🙂


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 Anonymous
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"name538" wrote:
There is no intelligence (Processing activity of a brain) without a brain.

There are plenty of brains with no intelligence, too.


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 Anonymous
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Your brain is not Mind; rather it is the receiver of the Mind.


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 Anonymous
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 Anonymous
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 Anonymous
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"Spiritual experiences are near impossible to describe- to one's self or to another, due to their transcendence of rational thought."

Are you familiar with Wilson's Tenth Law? 😉

You, empathic one, move invisible through this world undetected by the naked eye. Your nature is hidden from the distracted minds of the busy and the convinced. Your nature is hidden from yourself. You feel it. You sense it. You dream it but it escapes you like a ghost in the night. You are one with the shadows, one who hides like the dark side of the moon. You long for the light and freedom that comes with light but you fear discovery. Feel these words as psychic Braille, let go of the rational mind that tries to make sense of these thoughts.

Logic and reasoning are but one small component of your mind; they are tiny tools in comparison to the power of your natural intelligence, your implicate nature.

You walk through your life as if walking through a dream. In the dream you are caught in the struggle, in the fascination, in the pain, and in the illusion of the senses. The dream binds you, encloses you into the circle that becomes a fence, a cell, a trap to your inner nature. Once trapped the Empath nature falls into the sleep, becomes a part of the dream, and fades into the spell of forgetfulness. Forgetting who you are. Forgetting what you are. Forgetting where you are. The more bound you are to the dream, the more you fall into the spell, the more invisible you become.

You are the silent wanderer in a world of rushing images and constant noise. You are the ghost that walks in the moonlight searching for it’s memory of a life once lived, a place once known, a love once embraced. Hunger drives you in this walk as you pass through the crowds unseen. For as long as the spell binds you all you encounter will not see you, will not hear you, and will not know you. This is the pain of the Empath. For too long have you been the ghost, trapped only by the thoughts in your own mind. The walls of the dream that encircle you are made of thought and emotion. Emotion as water, water that reflects, reflections in a mirror. You look out into the world to find your life, you look into the reflection on the water and see only the images created by the dream. There is the observer and there is the observed. This is the secret to the spell. This is the tie that binds you to the mirror. What you are looking for is that which looks. The unawakened Empath is the hungry ghost haunting a house created by it’s own mind.

A house of mirrors.


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 Anonymous
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Unless you have been where I am, where I have been, you're simply not going to understand it. Unless you have been to the core experientially, you're not going to understand what you have not experienced. Experience cannot be put into words which only serve to cloud the issue and hide the door. They are the door. Maya. The door has a name.

The door hides where the eye cannot see. Hides from the eye because it is the eye. Eye of the Storm and eye of the beholder. Everything think either opens or closes the door.

Knowing is light and light hides what is known. Only in the darkness can you see the stars.

How I Know Is What I Am


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 Anonymous
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Some people tell me that they're not brainwashed. I ask them if they can understand these words without too much conscious effort. They don't get it. They do not understand. They do not apprehend the depth of the layers of the dream that binds their perception.


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 Anonymous
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I am alone: there is no God where I am.


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 Anonymous
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Any planets in mutable signs, name 538? 😉


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 Anonymous
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Here is my birth date, You may do up a chart if you like.

sol-29 Aquarius
Luna-05 Aries
dies Luna Anno IIIix


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 Anonymous
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kRB6Qzx9oXs

Here is a seminar on Whole Brain Emulation. One of my friends from my University days works with this.
This shows what real neuro-scientists actually know and believe about Brains and consciousness.


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 Anonymous
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Who you are does not exist. This is the secret of the Universe, the quiet whisper amongst the Angels.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_hole

"Despite its invisible interior, a black hole can be observed through its interaction with other matter."


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Los
 Los
(@los)
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"Noctifer" wrote:
Either you're a dismissive reductionist, or a Thelemite.

I'll take "false dichotomy" for 200, Alex.

For your convenience, Noctifer, I am pasting below part of my post from earlier in the thread that I would like you to address -- in it, I outline how the concept of True Will is useful:

Most people at some point in their lives discover that the things that they want -- or, rather, that they thought they wanted -- do not, in fact, bring them the satisfaction that they thought. They discover that decisions they make on the basis of who they *think* that they are lead them into situations that create an internal resistance.

Perhaps you have never experienced this phenomenon. In that case, then there is absolutely no problem that you need to address, and you can safely forget all about this "Thelema" stuff.

Most people, though, find that their ideas about themselves and their desires occasionally lead them into difficulties, and the model of True Will vs. "false will" is a model of self developed to explain the cause of this problem and a potential solution to it.

The model is essentially this: the nature of an individual is partially veiled from that individual by the conscious mind (i.e. the part of the mind that has thoughts, emotions, feelings, imagination, etc). The purpose of this veiling, according to Thelemic metaphysics, is to produce the illusion of individuality so that experience becomes possible (cf. AL I:28-30)

Thus veiled from his nature, the individual will begin to make decisions on the basis of the desires that arise from the conscious mind -- from "should" statements, from the reason, from Because -- and accordingly, the individual will suffer. [Note: The reason the individual will suffer is that such statements, constructed on an arbitrary basis not necessarily in line with the person's nature are highly likely to lead to situations that conflict with that nature]

The solution to this problem is for the individual to identify which of those desires come from the conscious mind, so as to rule them out, and to pay attention to his own nature. Slowly, the individual identifies with his nature and not with the images presented to him by his mind.

Again, if you do not have this problem -- which, incidentally, just about everyone with the slightest bit of self-awareness reports having -- there is no need for you to adopt this framework, and you can continue happily along your way, ignoring Thelema.

The "true" part of "True Will," then, isn't about some kind of metaphysical "truth" -- it's about *consistency* -- it's about the path of "least resistance" (the way of the Tao), the choices that produce the least amount of internal conflict. "Truth" -- in the sense you're thinking of -- doesn't enter the picture.

Your choices either increase internal conflict, or they lessen that conflict. The "True" will is nothing more than the path that lessens that conflict, regardless of whatever metaphysical ideas you might hold about "Truth."


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 Anonymous
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Well the TRUTH is the external environment that conditions behaviors.
The conscious mind which includes all thoughts, emotions, intuitions, etc, is just another behavior. These behaviors are also caused by eternal environment, they are learned behaviors. These behaviors however once learned are harder to change, they have defense mechanisms that rationalize ways to keep from changing.

What this means is that behaviors may not adapt to new environments or situations very well, the physical behavior is more adaptable than the conscious behaviors, so one's actions may not agree with one's beliefs. This can lead to problems and people invent all kinds of rationalizations that turn into neurosis, as defense mechanisms that protect the self image that is tied to those learned behaviors one is reluctant to change.

This becomes especially problematic when the social norms and political laws are conditioning opposite behaviors or when for example Victorian morals attempt to use positive punishments against what nature has hard wires to be positive reinforced behaviors. These both lead to hypocrisy, of hiding one's behavior. Sex was punished under Victorian morality and law, but since sex is naturally a re-enforced drive in humans, people hid their sexual behaviors and created neurotic complexes of Shame and fear of being caught.

The TRUE WILL then is the direct behavioral response to the environment without the veil of defense mechanisms, without the EGO bundle of hard set behaviors that are hard to change. Also the True Will is an expression of the Physical organism in it's unique role and ability within the physical and social environment without fear or shame.

Thus the need to devise a social system that openly supports true expression and consistently rewards behaviors, helping each unique individual Will to find a social station in which to express itself without repression or guilt.

This is fully based on hard science and Behaviorism, and nothing to do with mysterious energies or entities.


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
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Topic starter  
"Los" wrote:
"Noctifer" wrote:
Either you're a dismissive reductionist, or a Thelemite.

I'll take "false dichotomy" for 200, Alex.

Firstly, my offline name isn't Alex (though I do like Alex as a name). Or was there an allusion I missed?

...and, in context, the quote makes perfect sense. Those who addict themselves to the need for materialistic explanations/rationalisations yet still call themselves "Thelemites" because it's in a wierd book whose poet-author claimed to have heard it from the mouth of a non-physical intelligence, are the false dichotomy. My statement stands as perfectly coherent and "true".

For your convenience, Noctifer, I am pasting below part of my post from earlier in the thread that I would like you to address -- in it, I outline how the concept of True Will is useful:

It's actually not for my convenience, but yours, that you are repeating yourself needlessly and demanding a reply.

Most people, though, find that their ideas about themselves and their desires occasionally lead them into difficulties, and the model of True Will vs. "false will" is a model of self developed to explain the cause of this problem and a potential solution to it.

There is no sense in the term "false will", as I've shown. Either something is your will (/desire/intention/purpose), or it isn't.

The things which Crowley called "false will" should not be called "will" at all, the term is an oxymoron.

The solution to this problem is for the individual to identify which of those desires come from the conscious mind, so as to rule them out, and to pay attention to his own nature. Slowly, the individual identifies with his nature and not with the images presented to him by his mind.

What if your "nature" is to identify with the images presented to you by your conscious mind?

Crowley identified pretty damn consciously with the image in his conscious mind of the Beast of Revelation which he'd learned about at Sunday School. He considered this his True Will, and was in conflict with the world around him for his entire life.

The "True" will is nothing more than the path that lessens that conflict, regardless of whatever metaphysical ideas you might hold about "Truth."

My ideas about "truth" are not metaphysical, they're just what the word is supposed to mean. The term "True Will" doesn't mean anything except in the implied possibility of its opposite - "false will" - which as I've shown is a contrived contradiction in terms. If something is not your will (desire/intention/purpose), it's not a "false" will - it's not any kind of will at all.

Calling unsuccessful, unintended, or unproductive results of action "false will" simply to make them fit the neat little model does not strike me as a particularly useful mental habit to adopt.

Crowley himself was utterly at odds with the world in which he found himself, as with most of the people with whom he came into contact during his life. I honestly don't believe that he chose "the path of least resistance" for a great part of it, but he was definitely true enough to his "nature", and did his will (ie. did as he pleased, which is Thelema, or will/desire).

This idea of yours also does not follow along from the second conflicting idea of True Will which Horemakhet suggests, or of Camlion's idea of a totally ungifted person struggling to try to play the violin in spite of their innate unsuitedness - the idea of "conquering through True Will", the Neitzchean idea of Heroic Struggle, which is totally contrary to any notion of "the path of least resistance".


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Los
 Los
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"Noctifer" wrote:
Firstly, my offline name isn't Alex (though I do like Alex as a name). Or was there an allusion I missed?

Watch Jeopardy sometime. Jeez, you got a Simpsons reference the other day....

Those who addict themselves to the need for materialistic explanations/rationalisations yet still call themselves "Thelemites" because it's in a wierd book whose poet-author claimed to have heard it from the mouth of a non-physical intelligence, are the false dichotomy.

A "false dichotomy" is a fallacy in which you consider only two options when, in fact, there are more options. In this case, the two categories you've presented are not mutually exclusive. One can indeed be a reductive materialist and accept the Law of Thelema while rejecting the mythology that surrounds the reception of the Book of the Law.

There is no sense in the term "false will", as I've shown. Either something is your will (/desire/intention/purpose), or it isn't.

Well, how about you actually address the model? Do you think the model is useful? Have you ever experienced the kind of internal resistance that the model represents and proposes to solve?

What if your "nature" is to identify with the images presented to you by your conscious mind?

Well, in the model we're working with, the images of the mind are necessarily veiling the nature of the individual from him so as to produce the illusion of separate existence and individuality. [Qabalistically, this is called the Veil of Paroketh, which divides the individual triad from the actual triad]

In essence, you're asking a nonsense question. If, in this model, we say that the images in a person's conscious mind (his image of himself as an artist, let's say) is veiling his true nature (his natural inclinations to go to sea and be a sailor), then it's simply an confusion of terms to say that his nature could be to identify with the images in his mind.

Again: do you have personal experience of the problem represented by this model? A lack of practical experience in these matters makes it all but impossible for a person to grasp what's being said.

Crowley himself was utterly at odds with the world in which he found himself, as with most of the people with whom he came into contact during his life. I honestly don't believe that he chose "the path of least resistance" for a great part of it, but he was definitely true enough to his "nature", and did his will (ie. did as he pleased, which is Thelema, or will/desire).

Well, I have no way of knowing whether or not Crowley was following his true will (he is, you know, on record saying that he is the first "and therefore worst" Thelemite -- or something very close to that effect).

But you are confusing "path of least resistance" with "no conflict" or "no effort." When I say "path of least resistance," I mean it in the sense of the Taoist Wu Wei, a non-interference (a non-restriction) of one's own nature. In these terms, someone whose nature it is to climb a mountain would be following the "path of least resistance" by climbing a mountain, despite the fact that climbing the mountain requires much effort.

If that mountain-climber chose to follow the self-image that told him he should be producing art or working as a banker, he would be creating resistance...the path of least resistance would be to follow his will.

Do you see how useful this spiritual model is?


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
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Topic starter  

Los, gratuitous sophistry is fine, but, well, not on my time. Sorry.


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Patriarch156
(@patriarch156)
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Posts: 486
 
"Noctifer" wrote:
Los, gratuitous sophistry is fine, but, well, not on my time. Sorry.

Perhaps you have time to explain to us where this sophistry occurs? As far as I know Los has not presented one item of subtly deceptive argument, but rather been clear and cogent in his examples and refutations of your ideas.


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
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Topic starter  
"Patriarch156" wrote:
"Noctifer" wrote:
Los, gratuitous sophistry is fine, but, well, not on my time. Sorry.

Perhaps you have time to explain to us where this sophistry occurs?

This bit:

"Los" wrote:
"Noctifer" wrote:
Firstly, my offline name isn't Alex (though I do like Alex as a name). Or was there an allusion I missed?

Watch Jeopardy sometime. Jeez, you got a Simpsons reference the other day....

Those who addict themselves to the need for materialistic explanations/rationalisations yet still call themselves "Thelemites" because it's in a wierd book whose poet-author claimed to have heard it from the mouth of a non-physical intelligence, are the false dichotomy.

A "false dichotomy" is a fallacy in which you consider only two options when, in fact, there are more options. In this case, the two categories you've presented are not mutually exclusive. One can indeed be a reductive materialist and accept the Law of Thelema while rejecting the mythology that surrounds the reception of the Book of the Law.

There is no sense in the term "false will", as I've shown. Either something is your will (/desire/intention/purpose), or it isn't.

Well, how about you actually address the model? Do you think the model is useful? Have you ever experienced the kind of internal resistance that the model represents and proposes to solve?

What if your "nature" is to identify with the images presented to you by your conscious mind?

Well, in the model we're working with, the images of the mind are necessarily veiling the nature of the individual from him so as to produce the illusion of separate existence and individuality. [Qabalistically, this is called the Veil of Paroketh, which divides the individual triad from the actual triad]

In essence, you're asking a nonsense question. If, in this model, we say that the images in a person's conscious mind (his image of himself as an artist, let's say) is veiling his true nature (his natural inclinations to go to sea and be a sailor), then it's simply an confusion of terms to say that his nature could be to identify with the images in his mind.

Again: do you have personal experience of the problem represented by this model? A lack of practical experience in these matters makes it all but impossible for a person to grasp what's being said.

Crowley himself was utterly at odds with the world in which he found himself, as with most of the people with whom he came into contact during his life. I honestly don't believe that he chose "the path of least resistance" for a great part of it, but he was definitely true enough to his "nature", and did his will (ie. did as he pleased, which is Thelema, or will/desire).

Well, I have no way of knowing whether or not Crowley was following his true will (he is, you know, on record saying that he is the first "and therefore worst" Thelemite -- or something very close to that effect).

But you are confusing "path of least resistance" with "no conflict" or "no effort." When I say "path of least resistance," I mean it in the sense of the Taoist Wu Wei, a non-interference (a non-restriction) of one's own nature. In these terms, someone whose nature it is to climb a mountain would be following the "path of least resistance" by climbing a mountain, despite the fact that climbing the mountain requires much effort.

If that mountain-climber chose to follow the self-image that told him he should be producing art or working as a banker, he would be creating resistance...the path of least resistance would be to follow his will.

Do you see how useful this spiritual model is?


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Patriarch156
(@patriarch156)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 486
 
"Noctifer" wrote:
This bit:

In other words you have no such explanation, merely an unsubstantiated assertion.


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 Anonymous
Joined: 51 years ago
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Did somebody mention "false dichotomy"?

The Thinker and the Prover... the observer and the observed... Eye of the Storm and eye of the beholder...

Where is the self in an interference pattern? - holographic koan


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 Anonymous
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"Noctifer" wrote:
This idea of yours also does not follow along from the second conflicting idea of True Will which Horemakhet suggests, or of Camlion's idea of a totally ungifted person struggling to try to play the violin in spite of their innate unsuitedness

Noc, as I think you know, what Los is saying is the same as what I was saying with the "violinist" illustration, and you have left us both hanging for a reply, deferring to semantics instead. What's up with that?


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Azidonis
(@azidonis)
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Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 2964
 

93,

"Noctifer" wrote:
Crowley himself was utterly at odds with the world in which he found himself, as with most of the people with whom he came into contact during his life. I honestly don't believe that he chose "the path of least resistance" for a great part of it, but he was definitely true enough to his "nature", and did his will (ie. did as he pleased, which is Thelema, or will/desire).
"Los" wrote:
Well, I have no way of knowing whether or not Crowley was following his true will (he is, you know, on record saying that he is the first "and therefore worst" Thelemite -- or something very close to that effect).

But you are confusing "path of least resistance" with "no conflict" or "no effort." When I say "path of least resistance," I mean it in the sense of the Taoist Wu Wei, a non-interference (a non-restriction) of one's own nature. In these terms, someone whose nature it is to climb a mountain would be following the "path of least resistance" by climbing a mountain, despite the fact that climbing the mountain requires much effort.

If that mountain-climber chose to follow the self-image that told him he should be producing art or working as a banker, he would be creating resistance...the path of least resistance would be to follow his will.

Do you see how useful this spiritual model is?

This is a very good explanation, Los. It's a good way to emphasize that deciding to do your Will and actually doing it, does not necessarily mean that one's path will be cakes and roses for the remainder of one's life. I might even venture to say that while it may or may not get harder, it definitely gets more intense.

Where Crowley was concerned, you are talking about a guy who... well we all know he had some sick fetishes, and was a bit masochistic at times. Do you not think he enjoyed being the Great Beast? Do you not think that the world being against him was not only a challenge (ie. fighting the old aeon current), but was some sort of proof that what he was doing was working, and causing a noticeable change within the world?

Along the lines of resistance, again, does one think that the Probationer has more resistance to his progress than say, the Adeptus Exemptus? Which is more challenging, a 101 level final exam or a master's thesis?

On the terms, you guys are arguing three terms:
will (as in want, desire, etc)
True Will (as in the wants, desires, etc. of the "HGA")
and false will (as in what your ego tosses in front of you in order to make you think you are doing what you are supposed to be doing, when you are really not)

While I can understand arguing the semantics, even to the "T", it must be said that it is quite possible that this word "Will" was used in much the same way as the term "HGA", and that was to save people from the confusion which has been displayed here and elsewhere. Maybe it should have been called Sugar instead?

93 93/93


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Azidonis
(@azidonis)
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93,

a la Merriam-Webster
___________
se·man·tics
Pronunciation: si-ˈman-tiks
Function: noun plural but singular or plural in construction
Date: 1893

1 : the study of meanings: a : the historical and psychological study and the classification of changes in the signification of words or forms viewed as factors in linguistic development b (1) : semiotic (2) : a branch of semiotic dealing with the relations between signs and what they refer to and including theories of denotation, extension, naming, and truth
2 : general semantics
3 a : the meaning or relationship of meanings of a sign or set of signs; especially : connotative meaning b : the language used (as in advertising or political propaganda) to achieve a desired effect on an audience especially through the use of words with novel or dual meanings
____________

It must be said that the term "True Will" is really a contrived term, much like the term Holy Guardian Angel. In that sense, the term does not denote the simple desire one may have to eat a cookie, but rather the desire (so-called) of the HGA. Thus, the term being contrived, it is only useful in the context that it was designed to assist, which is the concept of the HGA and Enlightenment in general. Thus, any argument on the semantics of the particular contrived term "True Will" must logically adhere to the model of the HGA and general Enlightenment. To force a term created solely for that purpose into the general meaning of its common English usage is not only a logical fallacy, it demonstrates a clear misunderstanding of the contrived term itself, and an attempt to force the term to fit into models for which it was not designed.

93 93/93


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 Anonymous
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Az, frankly, I think that Noc's diversion from discussing true Will (the topic of this thread) to discussing Crowley's personality or some silly semantical dichotomy between the words "true Will" and "false Will" is just that, a diversion. I would like to see Noc reply to Los' exemplar, or even to my "violinist" illustration (I'll copy it here again if need be), either of which I believe embody Crowley's ideas regarding true Will well enough for purposes of this discussion. Noc, if you will, please?


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Azidonis
(@azidonis)
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93,

"Camlion" wrote:
Az, frankly, I think that Noc's diversion from discussing true Will (the topic of this thread) to discussing Crowley's personality or some silly semantical dichotomy between the words "true Will" and "false Will" is just that, a diversion. I would like to see Noc reply to Los' exemplar, or even to my "violinist" illustration (I'll copy it here again if need be), either of which I believe embody Crowley's ideas regarding true Will well enough for purposes of this discussion. Noc, if you will, please?

Agreed.

Also in line with semantics (before it sprouts its ugly head again), one may consider the term "football". In America the term "football" refers to the game with 100 yards of playing field, the NFL, etc. In any other country the term "football" refers to what Americans call "soccer". Thus, it's a matter of context. One can argue the term football, but depending on what part of the world one is in, the term will have a completely different meaning.

I've drank many beers with Aussies and "half-ass argued" over the terms, in jest. There is no end to it, and no amount of semantics, or diversions, will change the issue.

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mika
 mika
(@mika)
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"Azidonis" wrote:
It must be said that the term "True Will" is really a contrived term, much like the term Holy Guardian Angel. In that sense, the term does not denote the simple desire one may have to eat a cookie, but rather the desire (so-called) of the HGA.

Why do you assume your HGA does not desire for you to eat a cookie?

You're creating a distinction between "will" and "True Will" based on a personal value judgment (eg, simple desires like eating cookies = will, grand, profound, complex desires = True Will). This value judgment is taking you way off track.

The distinction between "will" and "True Will" or whatever labels you want to use is based on one thing and only one thing: which actions reflect your pure, unfiltered essential nature.

It's not about long term v. short term, "higher calling" v. selfish wants, acts that have significant impacts to yourself and others v. acts that are mundane and quickly forgotten, etc. Living according to your "True Will" means making choices based on your actual nature rather than based on what you think you should be doing or how you should be acting. This includes choosing to have a cookie, and every other choice you make throughout your days. It's not just about the big decisions of "what am I doing with my life" and whatnot, it's about every single conscious act.


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Azidonis
(@azidonis)
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93,

"mika" wrote:
"Azidonis" wrote:
It must be said that the term "True Will" is really a contrived term, much like the term Holy Guardian Angel. In that sense, the term does not denote the simple desire one may have to eat a cookie, but rather the desire (so-called) of the HGA.

Why do you assume your HGA does not desire for you to eat a cookie?

You're creating a distinction between "will" and "True Will" based on a personal value judgment (eg, simple desires like eating cookies = will, grand, profound, complex desires = True Will). This value judgment is taking you way off track.

The distinction between "will" and "True Will" or whatever labels you want to use is based on one thing and only one thing: which actions reflect your pure, unfiltered essential nature.

It's not about long term v. short term, "higher calling" v. selfish wants, acts that have significant impacts to yourself and others v. acts that are mundane and quickly forgotten, etc. Living according to your "True Will" means making choices based on your actual nature rather than based on what you think you should be doing or how you should be acting. This includes choosing to have a cookie, and every other choice you make throughout your days. It's not just about the big decisions of "what am I doing with my life" and whatnot, it's about every single conscious act.

They were generic examples, genius.

93 93/93


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 Anonymous
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A diversion from what, precisely? My own thread? Must I really spell out for you Los' double-talk beyond simply pointing to his own words?

1. He defines, after much rambling, True Will as “the path of least resistance”. But then, when he is shown that this is not how Camlion, Horemakhet, or even Aleister Crowley define the term*, if the examples they provide (by their text in the first two cases, and through life example and writings in several places in the second) are any indication, Los then seeks to weasel his way out of the evident negative result of this rather clear refutation by saying, ' what I meant by “the path of least resistance” was not meant to imply a lack of conflict or effort”. ' . This, gentlemen, is sophistry of the most unhelpful and unmeaning kind.

If you don't mean to indicate a “lack of conflict or effort” by saying “the path of least resistance”, what the bleeding blazes could you possibly mean by it? So it's the path of least resistance (ie. /effort/conflict), but if it includes heaps of effort and conflict, that's covered too? In other words, as I've said, the term is both meaningless and useless in practical terms ∞.

He continually asks questions of me for which I have provided my personal answer in many places (eg. no, I don't find the so-called “model” of True Will useful, except in the most fleeting poetic sense – it is certainly not a “model” in the applied-Scientistic sense which many Thelemites (and at least one organisation) wish to present it as being, but merely a very typically early 20th century Romantic way of saying “your natural inclinations” (and the term occurs in no class-A document, and as such, is not essential to the practise of Thelema, which is simply will/desire, or “Do what thou wilt”, and needs no mediation, just cultivation), a view which I'm yet to be shown is not the best view of the matter currently available to my human Brain.

2. As far as the “false dichotomy” goes, there is none in the relevant statement in the context in which I made it, which was addressed at name538's incoherent position of pretending Thelema can be fully engaged with to the full satisfaction of all human values in an exlusively dead-physics model of the universe, such as proposed by reductionistic materialists as he wishes he was ∫.

My point was that is an incoherent and logically indefensible position to simultaneously do all of the following, which I think should be pretty self-evident:

1.call yourself a Thelemite accept The Book of the Law and “the law of Thelema” based on some sort of inner resonance or spiritual conviction, which is essentially a poetic, or spiritual, not dead materialistic, endeavour;
2.dismiss the magical annunciation myth associated with its reception, considering that it is on the basis of coming from a “praeterhuman intelligence” that the Authority of the book is said to derive; and
3. hold that you are thereby representing Crowley's own official position on the Book of the Law and on the nature of the Law of Thelema (a True Believer in the face of alleged “Heresy”, hallowed be its never-fading, truth-revealing Name, imo).

Please note, I'm not saying that anyone should or must do any of the above, including using logic as the evaluation tool - I'm just pointing out that you can't do all of them and pretend that your policy is entirely "rational".

_________________________________________
*As I've mentioned, Crowley, as the self-styled avatar and exemplar of “True Will”, seems to have chosen the path of maximum resistance in many if not all cases, as easily discerned by the evident amount of conflict and real, tragic disappointment which he had throughout his life ‡; and his Neitzchean struggle rhetoric in many places denies the idea of “the path of least resistance” as that of Thelema; Camlion and Horemakhet's examples – the un-violinist who struggles heroically to play despite being naturally unsuited to the task, and Van Gogh, whom Horehakhet says struggled against[/] his natural state and “achieved [his paintings] through True Will” against his inborn proclivities† – though I disagree that he was not a natural, he certainly was a natural in my opinion, if a comparitively late bloomer (though not compared to Bruckner, Janacek, or Kenneth Grahame!).

† contrary to Theorems 20 and 24.

‡ Theorem 28 is hardly a way out of this embarassing state of affairs, and tends to be problematic in practice – whether true or not – if one wishes to avoid parking tickets, to say the least. It's no help to say “but it's my True Will, officer - the designated parking space is clearly in the wrong spot, and everyone else is wrong for upholding a law which says it's right”. Is Thelema pragmatic, or is it absolutist?

∫ which position is contrary to Theorems 12 and 13 and is also denied by Crowley in other innumerable places, despite his few half-hearted, unconvincing attempts at pretending otherwise when it suited him in order to sound impressive and scientistic to the wide-eyed, uncritically-minded layperson.

∞ My own position on Thelema is that it is will (desire/love) as the simultaneous concrescence of continually emerging and intensifying/accelerating Novelty as the principle of Life-through-consciousness in the manifest universe, hence Dwtw etc. This covers the Arian and Capricornian elements quite adequately without pretending there's any "path of least resistance" involved, whilst being quasi-Taoist in the sense of being true to one's nature, and to Nature.


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 Anonymous
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There. Noctified.


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 Anonymous
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I would say that it's establishing the path of least resistance between the conscious and unconscious mind, the experience of which may very well and perhaps often takes the path of maximum resistance. How I Know Is What I Am


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 Anonymous
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"Los" wrote:
Crowley is, you know, on record saying that he is the first "and therefore worst" Thelemite -- or something very close to that effect).

So why, in the name of all that is sane, would you equate (the essence of or the best of) Thelema with either the words, or the example, of the "first and worst ever Thelemite", a man called Aleister Crowley?

Why the hell would you stop with the "first and worst" of anything?

Model-T Fords are very pretty, but they're hardly the last word in motor cars.


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Los
 Los
(@los)
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The phrase "path of least resistance" is associated with Taoism, the central concept of which -- Wu Wei, non-action, acting by not-acting -- Crowley connected with Thelema.

Obviously, "resistance" in this context refers to an individual's tendency to resist his own nature, the kind of resistance Crowley means when he writes things such as "This is sin: to hold thy holy self in." This line would be meaningless unless it were possible to "hold thy holy self in" through internal resistance, to follow a "fancy picture" of the mind instead of one's true nature. And indeed, practical experience -- for those of us who have practical experience, instead of fantasies and daydreams -- confirms not only this possibility that we would reasonably expect, but confirms the usefulness of the Thelemic model of self.

The context given in my post makes the meaning of the phrase extremely clear: "it's about the path of 'least resistance' (the way of the Tao), the choices that produce the least amount of internal conflict." [emphasis added] Notice that I put "least resistance" in quotes, indicating that it is a jargony phrase used in a specific tradition -- and that I cite said tradition -- and that I immediately go on to explain what it means in relation to the model that I just detailed.

To seize on a phrase like this that occurs once in my post -- which I thoroughly explain and give context for -- and object on the grounds of an overly literal interpretation of it is intellectual dishonesty.

A passage from Magick Without Tears, Letter 37, in which Crowley is commenting on AL I:44 ["For pure will, unassuaged of purpose, delivered from the lust of result, is every way perfect."], witnesses Crowley explicitly connecting true will to the Tao and with a surrender of "effort":

"The unusual word 'unassuaged' is very interesting. People generally suppose that 'will' is the slave of purpose, that you cannot will a thing properly unless you are aiming at a definite goal. But this is not the case. Thinking of the goal actually serves to distract the mind. [...] One wants to become like a mighty flowing river, which is not consciously aiming at the sea, and is certainly not yielding to any external influence. It is acting in conformity with the law of its own nature, with the Tao.

[...]

"One can never be sure what is right and what is wrong, until one appreciates that 'wrong' is equally 'right.' Now then one gets rid of the idea of 'effort' which is associated with 'lust of result.' All that one does is to exercise pleasantly and healthfully one's energies."
[emphasis added]

Notice that in this passage, Crowley affirms everything I've been saying on this thread. Crowley identifies the will with an individual acting according to one's own nature, which he explicitly connects to the Tao. And what does that acting in accordance with one's nature consist of? Ridding oneself of several ideas: the idea that an action can be "right" or "wrong," which are veils that the mind casts over the nature of the individual [i.e. "I should do X," I should do Y" -- see my previous posts], and the attending inner conflict that such a division creates. In short, the very idea of "effort" -- which here obviously implies the *internal resistance* we've been talking about -- vanishes.

This is precisely what Crowley means when he writes, in Little Essays Toward Truth:

"For until we become innocent, we are certain to try to judge our Will by some Canon of what seems `right' or `wrong'; in other words, we are apt to criticise our Will from the outside, whereas True Will should spring, a fountain of Light, from within, and flow unchecked, seething with Love, into the Ocean of Life."

What we're seeing in Noctifer's posts is the kind of thing that's bound to happen when you try to make Thelema into anything you want -- you end up with a mish-mash of useless daydreams in which you claim that the central spiritual model of Thelema is actually the thing that's "useless," all while having virtually no working familiarity with Crowley's ideas and -- apparently -- no ability to read the words of fellow posters and respond to them in a fair manner.

I suspect strongly that Noctifer has no practical experience of working with the Thelemic model of self, which is compounding his inability to understand it even when it is explained in simple terms.


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Michael Staley
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MANIO - it's all in the egg
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What do you mean by "the Thelemic model of self" and "the central spiritual model of Thelema", Los?

Best wishes,

Michael.


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 Anonymous
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You cannot speak Ruachian to a Nefeshian.


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 Anonymous
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"Noctifer" wrote:
There. Noctified.

lol I assume that means 'too slippery to be pinned down,' but don't count on that, my friend. I'll get back to you soon. 🙂


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 Anonymous
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"synchromorph93" wrote:
You cannot speak Ruachian to a Nefeshian.

A balanced perspective requires that one be fluent in both, synchromorph93.


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