Re: Purported mystical "knowledge"

From: Robert (Bob) Grimes (
Date: Sat Sep 16 2000 - 21:45:14 BST

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    Subject: Re: Purported mystical "knowledge"
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    Unfortunately, when I hear the terms "mysticism" or "spirituality,"
    there is a great tendency for me to equate it with religion, even though
    it may not be appropriate. I can handle "spirituality" as I do consider
    myself "spiritual" in the sense of appreciating non material concepts
    and relationships where they do not respond or are seem, at first,
    inaccessible through the scientific method. Still, I do realize that
    such concepts are products of material processes and, perhaps, probably
    products of material processes where not understood in that manner.

    Still, memes are memes and I realize that my identification reactions to
    words are perhaps one of the biggest weaknesses in language. Still,
    when I see a list of some words, for example:

    existential and hermeneutic phenomenology, genetic epistemology,
    semiotics, autopoiesis, etc., etc., (yes, I added one...)

    I get an almost uncontrollable reaction to reject whatever they are
    talking about. That is irrational and I would be the first to admit it
    but experience is a teacher that is hard to reject. I consider myself
    as partially into the "consciousness movement" but not when I see those
    words. I cannot figure why one would have to create a whole new
    vocabulary where it could be expressed in "normal" language unless they
    are attempting to avoid such "word identification" and subsequent
    "semantic reaction," i.e., semiotics as compared to semantics...

    Yet, I do not believe that, statistically, that is the reason.
    Unfortunately, my experience with compositions using those words has
    been dismal and disappointing as most have ventured into the "mystical"
    in the manner in which I use this word, i.e., having no relation to the
    physical or physiological world in which we, as physical animals, live
    and prosper or, in other words, more closely resembling "magic." Those
    who see "consciousness" as some collective "energy field," separate from
    the body and its neurotransmitters, hormones, etc., still appear to me
    to be talking "mysticism or magic" in the manner in which I use those
    words and in which most religious thinking, again in my opinion, also

    Still, today, where we lock people up who see "Saints, Angels," etc., we
    allow over 50% of the population to walk free who believe in E.T.s and
    flying saucers. My opinion of the reason for this is that the same type
    of person who believes in E.T.s and flying saucers, as opposed to saints
    and angels, knows that they would be locked up for seeing saints or
    angels but not for the former, and are the same physical types who used
    to see the latter...

    Notice that I did not use the term "UFOs" for the simple reason that the
    terminology no longer refers to "unidentified flying objects" but to
    vehicles from outer space (or some extraterrestrial place). Having seen
    flying aircraft prior to their announcement (secret weapons of World War
    II) I had no problem in identifying them as man made craft and guessed
    immediately their source. Of course, the presence of jet engines was
    extremely interesting and puzzling but it was obvious that they were
    weapons of war than had not been revealed publicly.

    The same is not true of some of the concepts and ideas currently being
    "seriously" discussed by folks with tremendous educational "exposure."

    Please pardon me for diverging into what I consider some of the pitfalls
    of language...

    Also, please forgive me if this is considered, in any way, a direct
    criticism of others on this list... I can assure you it was not so



    Bob Grimes

    Jacksonville, Florida

    Man is not in control, but the man who knows he is not in control is more in control...

    Quoth the Raven, "Nevermore....."

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