« We make our own meaning in an indifferent universe | Main | Zen circle reminds me that perfection is a fantasy »

March 07, 2020

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

@ Actually, there's no evidence that the Radha Soami Satsang Beas organization
@ is led by a guru, or master, who is perfect. Far from it. RSSB gurus make mistakes.
@ Their knowledge is incomplete. They are as clueless as anyone else about what
@ will happen in the future.

I believe the mystic would agree. Do masters misspeak, get sick,
stub toes, concede they're clueless about the future? Yes. They
are ordinary human beings. Stage actors like the rest. But their
awareness is different.

Their perfection lies in their awareness of who they are and and it
extends to that 24x7 onslaught of random thought and dogma
and impulse running riot within us.

Hazleton talks of fear, uncertainty, of the need for openness and
vulnerability. I think mystics concur but they argue it will never be
achieved without a path of one-pointed mindfulness of what's
within you. Once perfected, you become that "personification of
soul music".

Once perfected, you become that "personification of soul music".

Posted by: Dungeness | March 07, 2020 at 09:48 PM

Once perfected.....

Perfected - LoL

Personification of soul music..... Whatever that is, any evidence of it? @ Dungeness

Perfection. Purity. Beautiful ideas. But let's not let perfection become the enemy of the good. The enemy of personal progress.

If you lower all expectations, if you eliminate them all, then everything is perfect just as it is. Everything becomes its own standard.

That's a good place every day to go back to. To reset the compass in your meditation. So that every breath is an improvement on that. Yes, your every thought and act is an improvement on perfection! Whatever it is!

In hospitals this idea of perfection becomes a source of unavoidable torment. When one single error costs a patient their life.... One lapse in communication, one action in haste, when hundreds of patients are sick and lined up waiting for care, getting sicker all the time.... One mistake....

A whole culture of perfection and a whole business line to produce it has arisen in Hospital work... Lean Six Sigma. Six sigma is a statistical measure of error. Three sigma is the requirement for a research article to show that their new treatment has a real effect.

Six sigma is as close to zero defects as one can ever hope to get. And in healthcare generally much closer than is every achievable.

It's appeal to limited thinking is what sells this pocess over and over.

And because it's generally impossible two things happen. First, rather than open the door to transparency and good measurement, you get delays in agreement about the data. Despite incredible advances in electronic medical records, most of that data is now entirely hidden and access must be approved through several layers. In one sense this protects patient privacy. But it also is the means for projects to never get there hands on critical metrics, such as hospital infection and mortality rates. Where there is fear, you get false numbers.If you can even get the numbers. Perfection is the enemy of progress.

And zero defects, zero job injuries, zero waste, zero carbon emissions.... Zero calories. We set perfection all the time.

It's unavoidable. What we can do is adopt an attitude of progress along the way. And inevitably, when progress must happen, perfection must be relinquished at some point.

But it is just redefined. It's progress. It's not a static point. It's movement of any kind. Just like life. And that is the only real, and stunning perfection... Progress.

@ Personification of soul music..... Whatever that is, any evidence of it?

Ask Hazleton... those are her words. The mystic would say it's
something that can only be experienced to be understood...
like watching a beautiful sunset or eating ice cream.

This is all just an argument for nihilism, and not a good one either. To say that ideals are useless because they're not "scientific" is simplistic in the extreme.

The fact is that a significant number of people do live better lives through religious beliefs. This has been true for thousands of years, across the world. There is no evidence of an agnostic/atheist society that produced reasonably high states of human welfare. Oh, but it was tried: Weimar Germany, Mao's China, Democratic Kampuchea. There is no evidence that any society becomes happier or more moral when they abandon religious ideals. To imply that an ideal of a future life is just childish stupidity is a very old concept. No doubt it does work for some people, but the argument that it should work for everyone is just more of the usual atheist zealotry.

Agnostic?
Atheist?
Anti-Theist?
Where does Hazelton really fit?

The Atheist does not hold a belief in God. A-without, Theism- Belief.
The Agnostic has no knowledge of God or Spirit, A-without, Gnosis - Spiritual Knowledge, and according to TH Huxley who coined the term, they don't believe such knowledge can be known.

In contrast to the above, the Anti-Theist holds a definite view that God does not exist, and that, therefore, all such beliefs and claims of knowledge are false.

"..Yet I persist, because I sense -- and sense is the only word I can use here -- that it's important to reclaim soul from those who still conceive of it as a thing with an immortal life of its own, independent of the body. "

Those who believe in a Soul do believe it exists separate from the human body, and persists beyond the life span of the body.

Hazelton doesn't believe that. And more, she believes the soul does not exist apart from the body.

That's closer to Atheism than Agnosticism.

The Agnostic doesn't enter the debate. It can't be known. Therefore whether it is or is not cannot be determined through material proof.

The Atheist also doesn't enter the debate. The belief can't be verified. It can't be held since there is no physical evidence for it.


But the Anti-Theist does enter the debate: "It definitely does NOT exist! And lack of evidence is the proof."

It's an unscientific argument.

The Agnostic's argument can be proven, as can the Atheists...the existence of God can't be known materially, and so neither can belief be proven on a material basis.

But the Anti-Theist argument is flawed: They claim that what appears to be an empty room is actually empty. Science disproves that daily. Radio waves? Gravity waves? Light beyond the physical spectrum? Bacteria?

Today we know that many, many things exist that at one time we did not. When Thomas Edison saw that turning on and off an electric circuit caused static on an unconnected circuit, he dismissed it. But others did not. Hence the discovery of radio waves.

Even great scientists dismiss stuff all the time as non-existant that one day may be proven. All of science verifies this event over and over.

The creation is connected. We are all connected in ways we are uncovering all the time. So it is impossible to claim that when the body dies something connected to it doesn't continue.

Here is what Hazelton writes:

"They welcome both the unknown and the unknowable, explore without preconceptions, and place their faith in trust, preferring the chance of being proved wrong to the illusory certainty of always being right."

"Open and closed: perhaps these are the terms in which we need to think. Not soulful or soulless, nor brave souls or timid ones, but open-souled and closed-souled. Where the latter contracts and retreats from others, the former expands, reaches out, is open to the world instead of guarded against it."

I believe in this whole-heartedly. But that means we are inclusive of beliefs that are unproven. We accept that something might be true we don't know. In fact, that's how most things are before we learn.

If we are open-ended do we say "can't be known." Or do we say only "I don't know that today."

If we are going to define open - ended, we'd better be ready to revise our own definition...As part of being open-ended.


RSSB is a flawed religion, the same as all religions. Followers have to believe.

The term Perfect Master needs to be eliminated.

All or most think that their car, parents, partner etc is the best one.
That is right.
That is how it has to be …. after ….. one has made a choice.

After one has made up his mind whether or not to step upon a spiritual path and chosen one, it is time to walk.

and …..

most paths that are around in the world are worthy to be walked upon if only because it offers purpose and direction.

It reminds of nun that once was asked on TV if the lord had ever answered her prayers. To the surprise of the interviewer, see said "no, he never did" and upon asking why, for heavens sake she continued, she smilingly said that she love her lifestyle and in particular praying.

Trying to find the one and only teacher, teaching, path etc is an dead end, it never brought but misery to those who were trapped in those devilish thoughts, thoughts that keeps them away from, living their life, using there free choice to give direction to that gift of consciousness.

Yes for some the path is, no path, as they just love to wander around

@ There is no evidence of an agnostic/atheist society that produced reasonably
@ high states of human welfare. Oh, but it was tried: Weimar Germany, Mao's China,

.Maybe arguably true but the Weimar Republic was still definitely a Christian
country only becoming anti-church during Hitler. Claus v. Stauffenberg, a
participant in the July 20 plot, was a practicing Catholic.

I

I am awfully a perfect imperfect and so is everybody('s consciousness, in particular) dependent on his body' s tools -their potential, moods, circumstances around etc and therefore sum total combination
Onwhich decide every next moment unfolding before us in this World theatre. As I am absolutely helpless in reaching to what I plan or may be, I deserve I am therefore imperfect. I have the choice of systematic planning and efforts but God or nature knows what may unfold.Yet it is wiser to work towards set goals than to surrender.

Likewise Master's worldly sojourn as the history speaks, has never been a bed of roses and perhaps has been worse than the ordinary. It turns out therefore that they behaved imperfectly as us and no better.

For their inner perfection and which is of real significance their commandments to rise from grave ( we are already in grave even while living because eventually the grave is not far for none of us - now or then) and work for it incessantly endorsed their inner perfection which was witnessed by some of their disciples on the inside.

Being an atheist never mean that God has disowned an atheist and while as a pure believer he may not be alone to be owned by Him. May be He is us together.


Meditator, you wrote above
"Likewise Master's worldly sojourn as the history speaks, has never been a bed of roses and perhaps has been worse than the ordinary. It turns out therefore that they behaved imperfectly as us and no better."

then why worship them as a master if they are worse than ordinary? if they behave imperfectly, they are imperfect.
what inner perfection are you referring to? its imaginery and made up. the only real proff is their outer behaviour. anyone can claim inner perfection. its just a belief

I understand the basis and probably the reasons of Hazelton's (and Hawkins') concept of perfection - and also the foolish beliefs of 'perfect masters'. The very fact that everything is evolving points to the fact that nature (including us and our inventiveness) is forever coming up with with what appears to be better designs. And in obvious ways, they are 'better'. But 'better' only implies better from a certain point of view – which is how it serves and presents itself to 'me'.

I guess I view perfection somewhat differently in that everything is what it is. Indeed it cannot be other – and in that way it is perfect – it is what it is. Death for example is perfect. It may not be nice and we can try to avoid it and put it off through instinct and human inventiveness (which is also perfect) but it is exactly what is eventually supposed to happen to an organism that is born. A rotting apple is exactly that, no more no less. A parasite living inside another creature is exactly that - that is of course until through dualistic thinking, we remove ourselves from the reality of life.

Dear Amar,
Agreed. Why chase imperfection even if it may be intentional from a Master. The world and its operation seems perfect but is not. And therefore is subjected to annihilation over and over again. What has been carved as perfect can only sustain stability ever. To me this is the consciousness which I believe survives the unlimited turmoil at times as also its source - the God. The author has also expressed in this post that perfection is an illusion whether it concerns the Master or a disciple or the physical world.

The subtle and astral worlds are different from physical world and likewise God is a hyothesis for now which can only be believed until the God Himself makes one realise Him and subtle worlds.

There is no point in arguing that the perfect Master can be proven to be physically Perfect in this physical world. The perfect Master and God both are mysterious and unpredictable. Both need be believed till such time the very belief gets realized as Truth.

There is therefore not much of a difference between an atheist and a believer except that believer survives happily on his faith whereas either of them may realize Him or subtle worlds at the end of their journey.

what inner perfection are you referring to? its imaginery and made up. the only real proff is their outer behaviour. anyone can claim inner perfection. its just a belief

Posted by: AmarSingh | March 08, 2020 at 09:09 PM

Wrong Amar - it may start as a belief but they are open to anyone checking for themselves and validating their inner perfection. They even tell you how to go about this process.

So why not to go within, check out and then call their bluff.

Let us know when you have done so. Until then no point wasting time in a belief vs belief exchange.


@ I guess I view perfection somewhat differently in that everything is what it is. Indeed
@ it cannot be other – and in that way it is perfect – it is what it is. Death for example is
@ perfect. - that is of course until through dualistic thinking, we remove ourselves from
@ the reality of life... [also the foolish beliefs of 'perfect masters'.]

The perfection lies in their self-awareness not in some immunity from
physical laws or the inevitability of death.

Perfection can only reside within in consciousness. As you note what's
outside is always evolving. To assert what someone has experienced
inside is non-existent or foolish because you haven't is just as foolish.

Perfection is indeed an imaginary ideal, a lifeless dead end. Our idea of "perfection" is the ultimate imperfection.

Perfection is indeed an imaginary ideal, a lifeless dead end. Our idea of "perfection" is the ultimate imperfection.

Posted by: Sonia | March 11, 2020 at 01:40 AM

PERFECT, @sonia.

@ Perfection is indeed an imaginary ideal, a lifeless dead end.
@ Our idea of "perfection" is the ultimate imperfection.

How could anyone assert that about consciousness itself though?
How would you define "dead end" with respect to consciousness
other than subjectively? The GIHF seen outside is clearly imperfect
but what about the inner form and its consciousness which is almost
certainly the perfection that is alluded to? . Would you just infer a
lack of perfection outside also extends to anything experienced
inside?

Without having practiced an inner path and experienced the
awareness of what's inside (if anything), such an assertion could
be perfectly wrong.

Perfection is what you get when you have no standard. Everything is perfect naturally. If you accept all that is. If you simply observe without judgment. Then it's all as it should be.

To get imperfection, you must make a comparison to something. You must have a constructed ideal. Then nothing is perfect, except your ideal.

The notion that something perfect exists in this physical world can only be true if everything is perfect as it is. Including you and I.


: Perfection can be explored from two different vantage points. From the vantage point of actuality all things (Physical, emotional, psychological, or any combination thereof) are perfect in now-ness because, due to causality, they cannot be other than they are, so are therefore perfect as they are. From the vantage point of subjective reality, perfection remains an ideal to move towards but can never be realized. But it’s also helpful to be aware that what drives us towards seeking perfection is an underlying subconscious worry that our current experience is somehow wrong or not good enough, when in actuality it is perfect as it is. As all human experience is related to the pleasure and pain principle of want and not want, the way to engage with the ideal of perfection is to pay attention to what alleviates or eradicates the unhelpful worrying aspect so the mind can remain at peace with itself, others and the world around it whilst seeking perfection.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Welcome


  • Welcome to the Church of the Churchless. If this is your first visit, click on "About this site--start here" in the Categories section below.
  • HinesSight
    Visit my other weblog, HinesSight, for a broader view of what's happening in the world of your Church unpastor, his wife, and dog.
  • BrianHines.com
    Take a look at my web site, which contains information about a subject of great interest to me: me.
  • Twitter with me
    Join Twitter and follow my tweets about whatever.
  • I Hate Church of the Churchless
    Can't stand this blog? Believe the guy behind it is an idiot? Rant away on our anti-site.