I've loved pondering the mystery of existence. Not individual stuff that exists within existence. Existence pure and simple. The fact that existence itself exists.
(Some of my ponders, along with links to others, can be found here, here, here, and here.)
However, lately I've been wondering whether this whole existence pure and simple notion makes any sense. For a long time I've had this intuitive, emotional, awestruck feeling that somehow there is an existential underpinning to the cosmos that is, duh, existence.
Meaning, existence is akin or identical to "being." Which is a word that both philosophers and ordinary people use with ease. Yet usually without musing much about the concept.
It is. I am. We are.
Is, am, are.. these forms of "to be" sound so solid, so immutable, so unchanging. However, in reality everything does change. I am something for an instant. Then I'm something else.
Cells die and are born. Ideas come and go. Sensations flash into my psyche, then depart as quickly as they came. My internal organs are in constant motion. My body nearly so, in some fashion, for most of my waking moments.
Though godless and churchless now, I'm coming to realize that existence is a supposedly eternal omnipresent abstraction that, in some ways, took the place of a personal divinity for me.
God doesn't exist. But existence damn well does! Just look around, and believe!
It's been comforting to envision a transcendent Mystery of Existence that always has been, is now, and always will be. Hey, in a world of change, it's good to know that something in the cosmos will always remain the same.
Well, this presumes that "existence" refers to something real, not just a concept conjured up by neurons in the human brain. No one has ever seen, felt, touched, heard, or otherwise sensed existence pure and simple.
All we can experience is stuff that exists, not existence itself. In this regard, "existence" is like the idea of "self." We never catch ourselves as being a pure "self." Rather we experience happenings within and without ourselves.
Which can include the feeling that existence exists, or I am soul.
I'm coming to embrace a foundational view of the cosmos that is based on the deep philosophical premise of: Who the Fuck Knows?
Yeah, I know that certain things exist. But when it comes to Existence separate from any particular thing, I'm clueless. Maybe the cosmos just is what it is, as I am what I am: an ever-changing process, nothing eternal, including the laws of nature.
You see, my old notion of existence pure and simple lacks the ability to explain how all the stuff within existence came to be. So -- and this isn't an original idea -- existence must contain a creative principle in addition to a quality of just being. Otherwise existence would just sit there as a near-nothing.
Religious believers would jump at what I just said and scream, "That's God!"
To which I'd reply, "There's no proof of God, but plenty of proof that stuff exists. Why not just assume that the cosmos always has existed, and part of what exists is the ability to create more stuff that exists?"
Praise Something or Other! Glory be to Whatever the Hell Makes Things Be! This is enough for me.
Brian says it: "All we can experience is stuff that exists, not existence itself."
--Objective existence is appearance only while non-objective existence is unaware of existing and is inconceivable. Objective existence is appearance in mind while non-objective existence exists only as a concept in mind it perceives while conceiving/perceiving everything except that which is conceiving/perceiving.
Perception of this mind is only self objectification in space/time, but the non-objective functioning aspect of mind is phenomenally void and knows neither itself nor any "thing" at all.
So, who says this? This is being said by mind trying to see itself and failing because in space/time it appears void and "outside" space/time it cannot conceive what is conceiving.
So, objective existence is illusory while non-objective existence is absolute. Death is dying to objectification of functioning, death of "God" objectifying itself. Birth is being born to this process. I suppose this can go on eternally; formlessness becoming form and form becoming formless. "We" have as many forms as can appear out of formlessness.
Yes, you were Cleopatra and Seabiscuit too.
Posted by: tucson | April 05, 2014 at 04:00 PM
existence must contain a creative principle in addition to a quality of just being.
It depends how you define "creative". It could be that things flying around and bumping into each other, over time, learn how to minimize friction and avoid collision, creating the illusion of a Creative Principle.
Posted by: cc | April 05, 2014 at 06:05 PM
...mind trying to see itself and failing because in space/time it appears void and "outside" space/time it cannot conceive what is conceiving.
Mirror, mirror, on the wall
Who reflects with no distortion at all?
Who could it be and how would we know?
Distortion we are
On with the show
Posted by: cc | April 05, 2014 at 06:23 PM
I do not believe in the factual being of any thing objective because whatever may be subjected to extension in space and to succession in duration can only be an appearance in mind.
So, then, who-what is responsible for any appearance?
I am responsible for every appearance, and all other sentient beings can say the same thing, or know it without being able to say it, whether it be woman, tiger, fish or ant.
"I", in the meaning here, is a symbol, alone, unqualified and unqualifiable, having no attribute. It remains only on condition that it, under no circumstance, becomes an object of thought.
This "I" reflects with no distortion at all.
Posted by: tucson | April 06, 2014 at 12:10 AM
It's simple Brian
I repeat my question :
If you were an all powerful all knowing Being ,
What would you desire ?
Posted by: 777 | April 06, 2014 at 02:21 AM
I have no idea. I'm not an all-powerful and all-knowing Being. Plus, there is no evidence that one exists. I can guess that if I was a lion I'd desire to kill an animal and eat it, because this is what lions do. But it is just guessing to imagine what something that doesn't exist would desire.
Posted by: Brian Hines | April 06, 2014 at 08:56 AM
I do not believe in the factual being of any thing objective
Including your own words in print.
Posted by: cc | April 06, 2014 at 09:29 AM
These printed words have no factual, or actual existence or meaning. They are symbols in an attempt to point to something inconceivable and inexpressible.
Existence is a conceptual objectivisation. Not objectively applied it has no meaning.
Existence and its opposite, non-existence, are objective and relative concepts, so that whatever is said to exist or not exist must simply be an object in mind.
An object however, by definition, is apparent, and what can't be apparent can't be an object. So, what is objective may exist but that which is not objective can't exist. Therefore, though objectivity may exist, subjectivity does not.
So, as "I" (explained in my comment above), no objective thing exists, but objects may appear to exist while their subject neither exists nor appears to exist.
Existence is a conceptual illusion, an appearance in mind only.
Posted by: tucson | April 06, 2014 at 11:08 AM
Evidence that Soul exists:
We are talking about the Soul itself proves that it exists.
Evidence that all-knowing almighty God exists:
We are talking about Him itself proves that it exists.
Evidence that existence exists:
- do -
Anything and everything, including imagination, exists till the time it's creator wants it to exist.
Anyone doesn't even have any ability to think or discuss or imagine anything which is not inside him. Not even God can do that.
This whole universe is inside the God only... he thought about it and it happened.
Anyone out there, try to imagine anything which you think doesn't exist or have not yet been discussed anywhere in the Universe/planet earth.
Were you able to imagine which you don't know or which doesn't exist ?
Sorry, I know that each and every one of you failed like every other than you.
Its certainly possible that there are things which we don't know yet that they are inside us and the comes out at the right time.
Its certainly possible that there are things which we only have heard about, we can imagine that but we have not yet realized them.
Non-realization can not prove for non-existence. If anyone is trying that, then it's non scientific and mere words itself.
i.e. if you do not have anything to prove Soul's existence, you equally have nothing to prove the Soul's non-existence.
i.e. if you do not have anything to prove God's existence, you equally have nothing to prove the God's non-existence.
And, the frustration still continues...
There was an enlightened person and a curious person who didn't believe in the soul's existence.
The enlightened one gave an example (not so soft, I had also copied this example from that enlightened person in one of my early comments) to the curious:
enlightened person said:
- behead snake, or mouse, or horse, or cow, or human.
- reattach their head back on their body with all fancy cosmetic and medical advancements, fill in the required blood.
- can they speak now?
- why ?
coz they are dead.
- what is death ?
I don't know!
- Something was common in all of them which left their bodies.
what was that ?
- something, when it leaves, we call the body dead!
what was that ?
- It was the Soul.
why couldn't I see it ?
- You are not capable of doing so at this stage of your spiritual level.
I am thinking...
How can I improve my spiritual level to be able do do that ?
Any theories any procedure to be able do to that ?
what are they ?
- Masters and their statements.
- From the times of Lord Jesus to Lord Kabir, Guru Nanak Dev Ji, Ravidas Ji, Rumi, Shams Tabrizi, Shah Jilani, Sultan Bahu, Shah Anayat, Sayin Bulleshah
- to Tulsi Saheb Ji, Soami Ji Maharaj to Babaji
wait a sec, they all said same things ?
- yes, exactly and absolutely same.
that you can realize the Soul ?
- and the God too!
- by meditation.
Wow, how can I do it ?
- go to a Living Master, learn. Sit, silently, pull your consciousness to the eye center. let your heat fill with pure Love.
- practice daily and let it take it's own course of time
- and slowly you'll start feeling the changes inside your eye center and one day the doors to the spiritual realms will open.
- continuing on this path, one day you will realize your self.
- continuing on this path, one day you will realize the One.
Is there any other way to realize that ?
"Wish as if you were the wish. And so, in truth, you are."
"Live as if your God had need of you His life to live. And so, in truth, He does"
Posted by: One Initiated | April 07, 2014 at 01:07 AM
I spent years on this blog along with tAo and many others discussing/debating the concepts 'One Initiated' has presented above concerning the Radha Soami faith. I'm about done.
What I learned from all that discussion/debate is that those with faith, true believers, will not be changed or convinced otherwise, and those who do not have faith will not be made into believers.
This is true with political philosophy as well. Some people believe government is the solution to society's ills, others don't believe that, and that's it.
Every point 'One Initiated' raised has been gone over and over and over again on this blog. See the archives.
On a different note:
Far out! a really, really big galaxy:
Posted by: tucson | April 07, 2014 at 11:07 AM
One Initiated, you say: "We are talking about the Soul itself proves that it exists. Evidence that all-knowing almighty God exists: We are talking about Him itself proves that it exists."
Talking, thinking, imagining, believing, learning from dead or alive gurus, listening to others preaching, this is all in the realm of the mind.
Experiences within is also mind experiencing itself. Probably imagination. More likely manifestation of strongly held belief systems. We create our reality from our own individual belief systems.
You say: "This whole universe is inside the God only... he thought about it and it happened."
Sant Mat teaches that the Creator is beyond mind. It also teaches that Kal is mind. You say you are thinking... Still thinking... Maybe you should stop thinking and do your meditation... practice what you preach. Seems like you think you have all the answers.
Like Brian says... I also like to ponder the mystery of existence.
Posted by: observer | April 08, 2014 at 05:26 PM
About the whole "if you talk about it, it exists" argument. Well, I can talk about an electric goldfish with boob implants, doesn't necessarily mean that it exists.
In any case, the mind is always chasing its tail with these sorts of "stoner philosophy" type ideas. Existence precedes essence, mind is essence hence existence is unfathomable to mind. Finite automata can only ever obey God's Edicts.
Posted by: ThatThingThatYouDo | April 10, 2014 at 03:28 PM