As I find more books, new or old, that support the set of ideas I'm pulling together, I recall that my research can be seen as creating a new ergonomic technology, a system of understanding and experiencing religious or transcendent ego death.
This new system or approach uses existing ideas and methods but pulls them together in the most explicit, concise, and convenient way. Scholars may find it surprising that they know pretty much all the ideas but have not seen them effectively pulled together, or productized. Ease of use, convenience, and ergonomics are all-important.
dc wrote the phrases:
>>the sectarian differences in Buddhism and Hinduism correlations with your terminology
>>Sanskrit, Chinese and Japanese terminology.
>>The Ichinen Sanzen theory of Chih-I is expressed on many levels within high Buddhism, from metaphoric to specific
>>The history of the debates within Buddhism
>>the "method of teaching," in any given time or place.
>>I too wish to see "restatements" in "modern" academic terms
Every point is debatable for clarification. One could assert that my theory -- as a system of explanation, as a communication product given by one person to another -- is just one more expression of what has been expressed many times, a modern stylization that is no better than other, pre-modern stylizations. I reject that assertion. In absolute terms, what makes my theory modern is not the removal of one set of metaphors and replacement by a different stylized set of metaphors that is no better.
Rather, what makes my systematization modern is that it is *more ergonomic* for a general audience of any era; it truly is simply more direct, more to-the-point, more compact, more efficient, more ergonomic, not just for today's audience because using contemporary language, but by universal standards of evaluation. Consider the philosophy or theory of surface expression/embodiment versus deep structure of content.
All previous attempts at effective systematization are failures *on their own terms* as well as when judged by universal standards of evaluation. Any particular past theory of religious insight only achieved an efficacy rate of 2% *for its intended audience*. Past systems of theory-and-practice (philosophy and tripping) were only efficacious because of the heavy presence of tripping, in combination with ineffective philosophical systematization.
In contrast, my theory provides a far more efficient explanatory systematization, which is -- like any -- combinable with heavy tripping. Past systems were inefficient, saved only by the tripping side of the equation. Past systems worked by lopsidedly relying on the potential of tripping, combined by a just barely adequate systematization. Modern systematization has more potential in absolute terms, potential to achieve a high percentage (98%) efficacy, even if combining full theory-learning with just a tiny bit of tripping.
Past whole-systems of transcendence that worked involved heavy tripping combined with poor theorizing (poor by their own standards and by any standard); my modern whole-system of transcendence works by combining unprecedentedly *direct* and effective explanation, with any amount of tripping. My systematization (the Cybernetic Theory of Ego Death) is clearer not just to today's audience, but to any audience; it is clearer in absolute terms, not just relative to its contemporary audience.
This works by incorporating myth but also incorporating explicit explanation of how myth works; no system of religion explanation and insight communication is effective unless it provides a clear explanation of how myth works, what it means and refers to, showing a mapping between the direct non-metaphorical model of transcendent knowledge and the mythic metaphorical descriptions of various systems of myth-religion.
The idea that "there is nothing new under the sun" is no more than a partial truth, and being partial and incomplete yet looking absolute, it is misleading and a distortion of the truth. New paradigms are new arrangements that incorporate *but change* the old valuable components of insight, squeezing even more of the potential out of the old components. The paradigm I define is better in absolute terms at eliciting the potential of the ideas which had been hazily communicated before.
One way it is better is that it has much higher *for its intended audience* than the old attempted systematizations had *for their intended audiences*. Thus after we have normalized for cultural differences, my theory still comes out far ahead. Previous systems were confused and hazy *to their own audiences*; they were *not* clear and direct and ergonomic to the audience of their day. Mine is a breakthrough in efficacy of communication of the perennial transcendent knowledge.
I am not the first to discover perennial knowledge, but rather, am the first to clearly systematize it to make it, *for the first time in history*, ergonomically and reliably communicable to anyone who cares to study it, certainly anyone in today's audience, and generally anyone in other cultural audiences as well.
How is this breakthrough possible? In the modern era we have the advantage of being able to combine the study of visionary plants and chemicals together with the study of myth, the information age, the Web, the Internet, cheaply available books, transportation to libraries, printing press, media, color magazines, Amazon online reviews of books, conceptual language from science, engineering, computer science, cognitive science, Gnosis magazine sweeping across Western esotericism.
Many of these things happened after my key initial breakthrough 12/12/1987 -- it would take more analysis to describe which of these enabled the initial key breakthrough (solving the book The Way of Zen by applying the view of no-free-will) and Jan. 11, 1988 (self-control problems and self-control cybernetics reunderstood in terms of frozen timeless block-universe determinism). At that time -- 1988 -- my work was born, but not yet developed.
I have photos of me holding a draft of "The Cybernetic Theory of Ego Transcendence" in 1988 or 1989, and I have those drafts, which mostly and essentially match what I posted in 1997 at Principia Cybernetica and at my Intro article at my website.
I knew about no-free-will and its relation to self-control cybernetics (personal controller agency) in 1988, and had experienced satori as according to demythologized (myth-ignorant) Zen scholarship per Alan Watts, but had not yet experienced such insights as needing transcendent rescuing of personal controllership stability, corresponding with gods and magic and supernaturalist mythic metaphorical themes in all religions.
At that point, I had modern understanding in a direct sense, of block-universe determinism, but did *not* know how problematic that determinism was for personal self-control stability.
Around 1995 -- I have not sorted out my dates well enough for that era, though I literally have an artistic electric-guitar plus voice recording of idea development during the insight that immediately led to transcendent prayer (named Escape Velocity, mentioned at the WELL, likely the source of Mary Dery's book title) -- I started having a better understanding of just how unstable self-control is and how extensive freewillist thinking and egoic agency thinking is; in classic mythic terms, I had yet to burn away mortality, impurities, and sin, to be fully perfected and regenerated.
I had profound metaphysical insight in 1988, but not yet radically transcendent insight along the lines of urgently needing and depending upon some sort of transcendence of determinism, such as is allegorized in Buddhist colorful deities of wrath-and-compassion and in the Jewish JHVH of righteous wrath and loving Goodness.
In terms of the Rush song The Body Electric, I had knowledge of no-free-will such as in the earlier album Caress of Steel and 2112, but had not yet come across the need for something outside determinism; had not yet "bowed my head and prayed to the mother of all machines". I tentatively date as 1995 when I first mystically prayed to avoid impending doom of self-control instability -- that is when I "got religion" in a certain high transcendent sense.
You might say I discovered the key to secular metaphysical philosophy in 1988, but didn't discover the essence of transcendent religion until around 1995. Around 1995 I still assumed much of the New Testament should be read literally; that there was a historical Jesus and crew, even though I had experienced rising up to meet the *heavenly*, spiritual Jesus as personified principle halfway up in the air, as in the "third or fourth heaven" in a system where the sphere of deterministic fixed stars to penetrate is level 8.
Between 1995 and 2003, I worked on revising my assumptions about entheogens in religion and about the nature of religion and myth, finally resulting in my view that the common origin and core essence of religion has always been the use of visionary plants to grapple with determinism, metaphorized in myth.
This included a complete explanation of how Christian mythic themes refer to visionary plants and determinism-transcendence; that Christianity easily makes full sense read this way, including a good dose of humor and clever wit, including *deliberate* meaning-flipping -- the epitome of "double-entendre" -- whereas Christianity makes ugly garbled monstrous inconsistent sense when read literally or Liberally.
Choice of explanatory paradigm is a matter of a beauty contest, for any audience. A system of explanation that not only *uses* myth but *directly explains* myth is more beautiful -- more effective for its audience -- than a system of explanation which uses myth but doesn't rise above myth, relying too heavily upon the use of visionary plants. All previous systems of religious-philosophical teaching are a combination of inefficient (for their *own* audiences) theory with use of visionary plants of varying efficiency.
Another advantage of theorizing in modernity, to produce a theory that is much more effective for its audience than any previous theory has been for its own audience, is the availability, albeit largely hindered, of chemicals and plant procurement, such as LSD. Blotter in particular is the pinnacle of efficiency, more controllable in terms of intensity though not duration, than any previous psychotomimetic visionary plant or chemical or method of application.
Modernity is better equipped to construct a theoretical explanatory system than other eras, in absolute terms, because it is the information age; *and* modernity possesses a uniquely *ergonomic* form of entheogen, LSD blotter. This method was typically and even normally used in conjunction with smoking cannabis, which puts the peak on the peak. Even though psychoactives were heavily persecuted in the late 20th Century, the available psychoactives were also extremely and unusually ergonomic -- efficient, reliable, potent, long-lasting, effective.
Overall and generally, pre-modern systems of communicating religious knowledge were weak in the theory department, and strong in the entheogen department. They had barely-adequate theory, combined with the oral teaching of entheogens.
In contrast, modernity suffers from being potentially strong and well-equipped in theory-construction, and communication thereof, but shot full of problems when it comes to the entheogen half of the equation; visionary triggers existed and were used, but not integrated effectively with the powerful theorizing capabilities provided by the 20th Century philosophies and systems of explanation. Simplifying further: in certain respects, pre-modern religion was weak at theory, strong at entheogens; modern religion is strong at theory, weak at entheogens.
But modernity has huge potential, to the extent one can ignore entheogen suppression, and also integrate entheogens into philosophy-religion (Theory). My theory expresses the full potential of modernity: the potential to have more ergonomic entheogen forms than ever before, together with more ergonomic and direct and clear theoretical explanation than ever before. Modernity has the potential to produce mine, the fairest theory of them all, much more effective for its audience than any previous theory ever was for its own audience.
>Concerning ego-death, illusions, and the concept of "shedding them like clothes": simply stated, in your opinion, what is the most efficient way to go about doing this?
My goal is to design a 2-part system for perceiving the illusory aspect of the self, a system with far greater convenience and ease-of-use than any that has existed so far. Prometheus brought the general knowledge of how to make fire, but what people actually need is a disposable lighter such as I am designing. Who has time for ten years of reading books and another ten years of meditating, with statistically dismal results that just prove the ineffectiveness of such an approach?
On the other hand, we tried enlightenment in a pill but found that something was missing (so I maintain). People have also tried studying religions and religious myths, or participating in ritualism, again with little compelling effects. The most efficient and convenient way to fully experience ego-death, and perceive the exact and specific way in which ego is an illusion, and abandon the delusion of taking this (indestructible) illusion as reality, is to learn a simple, minimalist set of concepts, and mentally work through those concepts while in the loose cognitive state, produced on demand through the venerable traditional technology of entheogens.
The most efficient way to bring about an intense religious experience is through:
o Studying the basic relationships between the concepts of personal will, time, choice, and self-control. My Introduction article is designed to provide all the concepts that are needed, in the space of just a few pages. These ideas are individually found in books but are not gathered together systematically into the form of an easy-to-use technology such as I am designing.
o Considering the ideas while in the loose cognitive state, through skilled use of entheogens or "cognitive loosening agents".
>The post-enlightenment attempt to figure about how to live in the mundane world is itself something that takes place in the mundane world, with all its confusion, historical determinism, cultural bias, etc. It is on this side, not the other side. A world model, not revelation.
>This parallels the enlightenment process itself: ordinary rationality, then experiences of loose cognition, then the attempt to create a new framework that takes them into account, but isn't itself mystical intuition, but rather a rational, scientific model that must be judged like any other scientific worldmodel.
Most realistically, when taking a detailed look at that process, enlightenment happens through a series of mystic altered-state sessions in conjunction with stop-and-start development of concepts about transcendent knowledge. Conceptual insight and mystic experience sometimes alternate from day to day, and sometimes jump forward together.
>Contrary to low religion, which thinks that otherworldly figures came here bearing an otherworldly text or doctrine (The Bible says it!); the founder is a mortal who has had access to entheogens, and the doctrines are his theories (or someone's version).
I'm dogmatic and doctrinal, and use axioms as starting points like a kind of "faith". But it's pretty harmless, because I frame this as a theoretical model and explanatory framework. I base the model I'm pulling together on my "experience of insight" and that of others as read through my interpretation.
A classic definition of what it takes to be enlightened would justifiably include comprehending a set of concepts *in conjunction with* a series of intense mystic-state experiences. Both aspects are distinct but build each other up.
>Phillip Sherrard wrote an excellent article, "Tradition and the Traditions" in the sixties that made this argument against Guenon, Schuon etc. Their 'perennial tradition' is a theory they created to explain religious differences,
I believe that religions and philosophies are more or less distorted expressions of the core theory I'm pulling together. In that sense, I agree that there has been a perennial tradition. I don't know the details of Guenon's or Schuon's description of the perennial philosophy. I would assess their model by asking their view on freewill moral agency, historicity of founder figures, entheogens, and the rational comprehensibility and simplicity of mystic insight or enlightenment.
My position or model on these four key points is that freewill moral agency is an illusion, founder figures aren't historical, entheogens rather than meditation/contemplation are the source method, and mystic insight is rationally comprehensible and simple. This is generally the opposite stance of the standard view. A good model of the perennial tradition should match my model's stance on those four points.
>not itself a revealed tradition; upon examination, it embodies their biases, is, in fact, not a unbiased scientific hypothesis but a covert Sufism,
I don't know if I would call their models "Sufism" or "covert". I know Schuon has an affinity for sufism, while I have an affinity for Christianity particularly in its early Hellenistic context, including Hellenistic Judaism and Gnosticism and the mystery religions.
I have that affinity because in Hellenistic religion, I clearly see support for my position on the four key points: Hellenistic religion is close to the views that freewill moral agency is an illusion, founder figures aren't historical, entheogens rather than meditation/contemplation are the source method, and mystic insight is rationally comprehensible and simple.
I would like to read Sherrard's article "Tradition and the Traditions". There is an ongoing debate about whether religions meet at essentially a single, same mystic apex. Some people are committed to exclusivity in their religion -- they therefore deny the equivalence of mysticism in various religions; they deny the pyramid model in which the religions are very close together at the mystic peak and far apart at the literalist base.
Forman takes the view that Wilber and I and Watts take -- along with Schuon, as far as I know: that the religions are various expressions of the same peak, the same mystic realm, and are more or less distorted expressions of the same core set of insights. Unlike other theorists, I also emphasize that they are about the same mode of intense mystic altered-state experiences, too, and connect that cognitive mode with entheogens as the main original method and source of the experiences and the concomitant insights.
>and adherents of other traditions are at liberty to dissent from Guenon's (or Huston Smith's) hierarchical ranking of jnana vs bhakti, etc.
I'm so skeptical about complicated multi-tier models such as Wilber's 7 or 9 or 11-step model, I basically reject it in favor of a 2- or 3-level model.
>the same sort of charge could be brought against Piaget, Kohlberg (who explains a child's reluctance to eat meat as a failure to rise to a higher level of moral theorizing) and perhaps Wilber. On what basis are these rankings made?
Wilber's answer would be that his experience matches that, and that all the mystic theorists agree. Now, I pay attention to the masses of theorists, but again I treat them as all putting forth more or less distorted expressions of what goes on in mystic experiencing and transcendent insight, and I consider the model I'm pulling together to be far more modern and scientific and streamlined -- a product of the computer age. I think of my model of enlightenment as "the Stanford model of transcendent knowledge", influenced by Hofstadter and Silicon Valley.
>Why should we accept these criteria, where, say, Zen comes out on top, rather than others that would put Sunni Islam on top? Whose bias chooses the criteria?
We should accept criteria where entheogens come out on top, and my model comes out on top. Zen is too indirect, lacking conceptual and linguistic facility (Chinese thought is far too concretistic, limited too much to rocks and trees and mountains -- _Ways of Thinking of Eastern Peoples_).
Using today's best tools of the information age, I strive to engineer a more ergonomic, efficient explanation of the mystic concepts than has ever been done, drawing upon a range of metaphors and topics and linguistic or conceptual constructions. Similarly, some of the contemporary synthetic entheogens are far more ergonomic and streamlined than many traditional entheogens. We have better chemical tools and better conceptual tools and better communication tools and channels than previous eras.
I'd be doing a poor job if I didn't produce a more efficient and ergonomic technology. In those respects, I'm a proponent of the idea of progress. I reject James Arthur's optimistic assumption that the world is progressing spiritually (it might or might not happen), but I certainly maintain that we're in a much better position than ever to design a highly ergnomic system of metaphysical enlightenment.
Previous systems of transcendent knowledge are horse-and-buggy compared to what we can now build, in terms of efficiency and ease of use.
>This is the advantage of your own theorizing, with its explicitly rational, scientific procedures.
Schuon and Wilber may be much too respectful of the efficacy of previous systems -- they don't assume progress and the ability to build a much better mousetrap as I do. We can now provide the entheogenic initiation of the mystery-religions better than the mystery-religions did, combined with a more straightforward and conceptually powerful and precise conceptual model of mystic insight than Platonism.
On both halves, the intense mystic altered state and rational comprehension of mystic conceptual insights, we can build better technology and a more effective system than previous cultures could. We can build a streamlined efficient model *and* use that model to explicitly explain the previous, primitive, distorted, muddled systems such as gnostic mythology.
>>"A further non-Islamic element in Schuon's practice is nakedness. ... at the 'Rite of the Sacred Pipe,'
Was there cannabis in the pipe, such as hashish?
>>Although Schuon discusses his magnificent nakedness quite openly (see http://www.frithjof-schuon.com/interview.htm) Huston Smith never discusses this aspect of Schuon's work. ... Perhaps we might suspect Prof. Smith is not the most reliable guide to address the issue of whether entheogens are "appropriate" methods, if we knew that his own guru prefers "indianized bikinis".
I assume that Smith could be completely right-on in his assessment of entheogens as "appropriate" methods even if his guru has distinctive tastes in the bodily realm. When I consider Smith's stance on entheogens in religion, I start by bracketing that off from other topics unless there is clear reason to consider those other topics.
I am still developing an opinion on Smith's stance on entheogens -- he doesn't elevate entheogens enough, but tends to treat them as a modern approximation to "the traditional methods"; he still appears to operate under the paradigm of meditation/contemplation being the main method and entheogens being an "alternative", upstart method. I firmly reject that paradigm. Entheogens are definitely the main method by a mile, and meditation/contemplation is the "alternative", upstart method.
>>At least we can be sure there's no hemp in those "sacred pipes."
I don't know what basis there is to conclude that. A main topic in entheogen scholarship is to determine just how great the extent of use of psychoactives in religion* has been. (*myth-religion-philosophy-mysticism)
>>Actually, Watts broke away from the Traditionalist line in [the book] Beyond Theology.
I have read most of this very good book and what I think of as its companion, Behold the Spirit.
Beyond Theology: The Art of Godmanship
Behold the Spirit; A Study in the Necessity of Mystical Religion
>>"There is not a scrap of evidence that the Christian hierarchy was ever aware of itself as one among several lines of transmission for a universal tradition."
Not true. Some early Fathers' writing stressed the non-novelty of Christianity, saying why criticize us, our philosophy is the same as all your pagan philo-religion. And, notice how Watts qualifies this: the Christian *hierarchy* refused placement next to other systems -- but what about non-hierarchical Christianity and its adherents? (Gnostic Christianity per Freke & Gandy; the Mary Magdalene church vs. the Church of Peter).
They typically placed Christianity next to other systems, and had little exclusive commitment to official hierarchical Christianity.
>>"Christians... [official, hierarchical Christianity] do not take at all kindly to ideas that even begin to question the unique and supreme position of the historical Jesus... Christianity is a contentious faith which requires an all-or- nothing commitment to Jesus as the one and only incarnation of the Son of God." For this Watts was summarily dismissed by the Trads.
Of course; that's inherent in the tradition; he showed himself to belong to the church of Mary Magdalene, or gnostic Christianity, or esoteric Christianity. He dismissed himself; the tradition isn't about to budge from its profitable franchise strategy.
>>In a review [of Watts' Beyond Theology, I presume] in their [the traditional hierarchical Christians'? Schuon's?] house organ, Studies in Comparative Religion, Watt's relation to Guenon et. al. was described as "a speculative intelligence drew him hither, and a speculative unintelligence drew him thither-- thither being the empty riddles of Krishnamurti." Anathema est!
Without the context, that quote is full of ambiguities. Can you resolve? --
>>Watt's relation to Guenon et. al. was described as "a speculative intelligence [Watts' own? Schuon's?] drew him hither [to what school? Schuon's & Guenon's?], and a speculative unintelligence [Watts'? Krishnamurti's? Schuon's?] drew him thither-- thither being the empty riddles of Krishnamurti. [did Watts embrace Krishnamurti's views?]"
>>Shankara agrees with Wilber, but does Wilber even mention the other two main Vendatin thinkers?
Without Wilber on CD-ROM, or a global index, I don't know.
>>Ramanuja for one asserts that higher than the experience of unity is that of a personal relation with Krishna, as the Gita indeed teaches;
I am able to agree, using metaphorical flexibility: in the intense mystic altered state, it is common to experience the block universe, and then experience a fatally problematic and unstable loss of practical control, leading to calling out for an impossible, personal, compassionate, transcendent rescue from dire straits -- an absolute emergency for which an impossible rescue from outside the system is required, even if impossible or irrational or transrational.
This is a leap of faith and ascension into the transcendent, divine realm. This sequence is reflected in the godman mystery-religions and in the common idea of "compassionate deities".
>>...we can expect "theorists" (who presuppose the superiority of knowledge to faith) to disagree.
I hesitate to consider knowledge as superior to faith -- it depends on your definition or model of 'knowledge' and 'faith', and these definitions all switch together with respect to which interpretive framework is used: the literalist, or the intense mystic-state experiential metaphorical framework. I advocate a conception of 'faith' that is grounded in and defined from within the realm of knowledge-informed intense mystic experiencing, not the kind of blind credulity in literalist assertions as the low religionists have.
In the systematic model I'm pulling together, fully developed knowledge is needed and some type of faith or hyperdrive into the transcendent realm above logic is needed. Logic dictates that one's near-future movements of will are timelessly frozen and preexistent. Vividly comprehending and grasping that can produce control-seizure and fully destabilized control, or suchlike desperate states, when self-command is put to the ultimate test.
Faith, however conceived, is an eminently useful, life-saving move. If logic gets you down, in the throes of ego death, transcend it -- not out of disrespect for logic, but because perfect logic causes control instability. I gather that a mind based on illusory freewill self-control agency cannot gaze upon perfectly consistent thinking and remain stable.
Transcendent faith serves as a rescuing stabilizer; the only solution is gaining the mind of the transcendent godman, who exercises compassion/mercy/faith/love as well as logic/judgement/justice/reason. The person with a transcendent, divine mind or mental worldmodel rests one foot on mature, perfected worldly reason, and the other on transcendent faith of this type.
Much theology of 'faith' and 'being saved' steals a legitimate basis from intense mystic state insights and problems -- problems of personal sovereign controllership and the experience of breakdown of freewill moral agency. Religion is true, when understood from within the mystic interpretive framework, which is the true origin of religion. When faith is stolen from the mystic realm and bandied about in the literalist realm of low religion, then faith is debased and illegitimate.
It all comes down to the high vs. low version of each element: faith, demons, salvation, magic, miracles, apocalypse, the last judgement, angels, and any other challenging clever puzzles you can throw at the mystic mind, master of metaphorical puzzles about allegorization of mystic phenomena and insights and desperately problematic and awesome, fearsome situations that one encounters during the ascent through the planetary deterministic spheres.
Every word in the scriptures is true, when read from within the mystic-state metaphorical interpretive framework, and every word of the scriptures is false, when read from the low-religion, literalist and supernaturalist interpretive framework.
>>This was one way of looking at Sherrard's point. To even want a "theory" of comparative religion is already to privilege theory over personal relations;
Does the theory I'm pulling together privilege theory over personal relations? The bulk of my systematic model is theory and not dependent on personal relations with transcendent deities. However, my model explains why it's so common to pray for compassionate personal rescue from outside the deterministic system, impossible as that may be according to purified and fully developed reason, during the advanced peak of an intense entheogenic mystic-state session.
My model of frozen timeless block-universe determinism won't save you from loss of control or severe control instability -- control breakdown and seizure -- given that this model is designed to zero in on exactly that orgasmic control-breakdown climax, that strange attractor the mind discovers as its awesome rightful heritage during heavy loose cognition.
For stability, when logic fails to help and only exacerbates the control-seizure problem, we can have only a recourse of something other than logic -- here, the mind truly gets religion and transcendent knowledge. Purified reason raises a problem and purified reason can only solve the problem by leaping outside the boundaries of purified reason. There are parallels in Hofstadter's book The Mind's I and Godel, Escher, Bach.
Can purified reason rescue practical control stability which is brought about because of purified reason? Yes, but only by purified reason comprehending how total the problem is, and realizing the impossibility of solving the problem using the native resources within the realm of purified reason. Purified reason gains high wisdom and humility, being informed by the fullness of loose-cognition experience.
Purified reason comes to the logical conclusion that a saving move is needed, to resume stable control, and that saving move cannot be provided from within purified reason. The conclusion is that purified reason must go beyond itself; it's the only logical solution, this transcendence of logic.
The mind concludes, based on its intense mystic-state loose-cognition experience combined with hyper-clear reasoning, that the solution to the problem of control instability cannot come from within hyper-clear reasoning, but must transcend reasoning; one must gain the divine mental worldmodel.
Purified reasoning discovers frozen-time determinism, then immediately after, the problem of control, and then, the solution of transcendent self-rescue by refusing that very perfected reasoning that successfully brought one to this awesome transcendent problematic state. It's ironic that the moment reason attains that much sought-after perfect consistency, the mind has to drop it like a hot potato to regain practical control stability, virtual egoic sovereignty, now no longer taken as a literal reality.
Dropping perfect reason like a hot potato is connected to sacrifice of the lower mental worldmodel, and ascending into the divine compassionate super-personal realm and way of thinking. Purified rationality is like the harsh justice of the lower god, and the hyperleap of perfected rationality beyond itself is like personal compassion of a rescuer from outside the deterministic, rational system or mental worldmodel.
This is an accurate description of the spirit and concerns of Hellenistic religion, which was entheogen-based. It is somewhat arbitrary whether one eventually identifies the transcendent rescuer as a person separate from oneself, or a self in which one participates. Christianity has it both ways. The saved person relates to Jesus and is in Jesus -- as one is married to one's spouse and is united with one's spouse in a dyad.
This can be called a personal relationship between oneself as lower being (son) and higher being (father), or one's female (egoic?) self and one's male (transcendent?) self. The highest level of religion can be metaphorically described as a personal relationship between the saved and the savior, with both united, and both can be considered aspects of a person's mind, as all religious characters are metaphors for aspects of the psyche.
>>so it's no surprise that the theorist comes up with the usual "dualism evolves to unity" line.
Here too there is some flexibility when metaphor is used -- and language is inherently metaphorical. Mastery of semantics is required for enlightenment and especially for theorizing about enlightenment.
>>... if the origin and content and point of religion is entheogenic experience, ... we can access the core (or summit) of religious experience, directly, now, with even more efficiency, and cut through all these sterile debates that try to find the "real unity". As Wittgenstein might say, two thousand years of theology condensed to a drop of [Delysid?]...
Sterile debates can be cast aside, but skilled construction of descriptions and transcendent mastery of metaphor and semantics is still required, to construct ergonomic, useful explanatory systems that can be effectively integrated with loose-cognition sessions and the experiences they bring, so that the mind can fully experience mystic insight and fully comprehend mystic experiencing, both halves building each other up.
>>So let's simply jettison the mutually incompatible systems, and proceed directly to the source/point!
A rational theory cannot ignore the mutually incompatible systems. If it truly is superior, it must prove itself by making sense out of the inferior systems, to replace them. To replace the inferior, muddled systems, it is necessary to provide a bridge or explanatory easy downhill tube that provides an easier, more compelling explanation of those systems than is provided by the usual conception of those systems.
Only when you provide a clearer and more coherent system of Christianity, are low-Christianity adherents able to easily switch, through conversion within Christianity from low Christianity to high Christianity and finally to direct and straightforward, minimally metaphorical systematic religion, such as Platonism aimed to be.
A half-baked systematic model of the perennial philosophy fails to compel lower religionists to convert to higher religion, and fails to get them to further convert from the high version of their religion to the nonmetaphorical direct religion like my core theory of transcendent knowledge.
The ideal, best model of religion must provide a completely clear and direct and basically nonmetaphorical explanation of religious concepts, and must also bridge from the previous major religious systems to demonstrate clearly that they are more or less distorted, inferior expressions of this ideal systematization.
Simply dismissing low religion (literalist Christianity, mid-level Buddhism) is absolutely guaranteed to fail; it's impossible and is not an option; adherents like a bee "stuck" in a window will remain stuck in that reality tunnel or Matrix-like self-reinforcing interpretive framework.
The only way to release them is to go into their worldmodel and add at the top a tunnel through to the clearer, more coherent, nonmetaphorical systematization -- mapping all of their religious elements to the clearly superior and more rewarding and satisfying system.
The only meaningful kind of enlightenment is structured rational enlightenment.
>>Some say that upon conception, enlightenment is present, but then it becomes forgotten shortly after birth, hidden behind religious dogmas and power and parental beliefs. Wilber calls that the pre/trans fallacy. Without a highly developed rational mind, there is no enlightenment, only pre-rational fusion of identity.
>Scientifically we CAN say that at 49 days the pineal gland is finished developing to the point where it floods the brain with DMT and from that point the developing baby is PSYCHEDELIC. So YES, we have good reason to speculate the infant is enlightened BECAUSE of the flood of DMT. This psychedelia/enlightenment becomes forgotten or lost after birth because of progressive atrophy of the gland. This silly little statement therefore has more truth within that previously imagined.
The loose-cognition state or mystic state is distinct from enlightenment. The mystic state enables perceiving and thinking differently. After enough such perceiving and thinking, enlightenment can be put together by the mind, as a definite, particular structure -- a set of concepts and mental structures. Enlightenment is a set of mental structures that is fairly easily formed when combining mature rationality with the loose-cognition state. The loose-cognition state itself is not enlightenment -- loose cognition is the computational mode that enables enlightenment to be calculated and concluded. The infant may have the loose-cognition state, but it does not have the intricate mental structuring that is enlightenment.
People who think enlightenment is a vague and spiritual thing are bound to make the pre/trans fallacy and fail to distinguish between the mystic state of cognition (loose association) and the conceptual structures that are naturally formed and nurtured within that state.
People who maintain that enlightenment is a specific set of concepts forming "knowledge" in the common sense of the term accept that the infant or psychotic or spiritualist experience the mystic state -- that is, loose cogition -- but reject the implication that such minds contain the highly structured knowledge that is enlightenment.
If you deny that enlightenment is certain structured knowledge, it's even easy to suppose that an animal is enlightened. My definition of enlightenment as some particular structured knowledge (specifically, the concepts presented at http://www.egodeath.com/intro.htm ) inherently rejects the possibility of an enlightened infant or an enlightened animal.
An animal can only be enlightened insofar as they can understand the concepts I have outlined. That definition and specific programme of enlightenment might displease those who wish for enlightened animals, but that's how the system of enlightenment I'm packaging works.
People have different expectations of what enlightenment is all about or even what the word enlightenment *should* mean. After people understand my system that I sometimes portray as "enlightenment", they might reject it as an undesirable goal and definition of enlightenment, and seek instead to pursue or invent or define some other kind of "enlightenment".
However, I still can claim that I am defining the only definition of enlightenment that makes sense, that means anything, that delivers its promise. There is the specific kind of enlightenment I have exactly outlined and embodied in a small set of more or less simple concepts, and across the way are a dozen vendors of common enlightenment, defined as hard to convey, hard to understand, rare to be experienced, a thing of infinite value and rarity -- basically an enlightenment that has been elevated beyond any practical grasp of ordinary people.
The system of enlightenment I am pulling together is disappointingly simple and rational and denies metaphysical freedom, and denies the possibility of enlightened infants or enlightened animals -- but it is *easy*, reliable, definite, testable, specific, fast, efficient -- too much so, if you ask the person who is suffering from too intense understanding and is desperately trying to forget and stop being enlightened.
There are two kinds of enlightenment: the vague and divinely elevated and out-of-reach kind, which is something to be worshipped without comprehension, and the specific, finite, limited, and very easily attained kind, which is something to be even regretted at times, like the sobriety of adulthood after the fantasies of childhood are let go of.
>>It is unclear how a progressive entheogenist should respond to the views of those spiritualists who downplay or fail to honor and worship entheogens.
>FUCK-EM! I'm sick of their pontification, persecution, prosecution, and denegrating, condescending attitudes which typify their self-absorbed ignorance.
OK, I will oppose them and in some way ignore them, but I do have to pay attention to the misguided at least so I can work on the difficult task of expressing just how deeply they are misguided. I will say "The attitudes and outlook you hold on this subject are entirely wrong and misguided and are the opposite of higher knowledge."
I have been trying to study the common spiritualist thinking. I am not alone here. A good example is provided in other true mystics who reject the notion of metaphysically free will and the kind of moral autonomy ideas that go along with it. Such mystics are scandalous because they reject the very foundation of common moral thinking.
This is why the most hardcore mystics are thought of as decadent orgyists -- not necessarily because of the acts of such morality-denying mystic theorists, but because their theory absolutely undermines the assumptions of what morality is all about. To the Catholic moralists of his time, Luther responded by denying free will, with his book whose title is best translated "The enslavedness of the will."
It is hard work to continuously drive away half my audience every day, a hard labor of violating common happy assumptions. Perhaps the mind needs fantasies and hopes and wishful thinking, rather than sober maturity and knowledge of limits.
Maybe we thrive more when we can believe that there is yet some higher kind of enlightenment, that will free us somehow, and raise even the infants and animals to some hoped-for future exalted state. By putting enlightenment on a superhumanly high pedestal, we can happily worship it, chasing it day after day in a state of mind that is happier than if we actually ever *reached* the goal.
If humanity ever attained enlightenment, it would be forced to postulate some yet higher and more abstruse kind of enlightenment, lest it kill itself from boredom and the despair of finitude.