Lee Corbin wrote:
>> Samantha provided the helpful answer
> > > About the latter question, there is no shortage of words and
> > > phrases in English to distinguish shades of belief. Articulate
> > > people could easily always find suitable substitution phrases---
> > > but they didn't do so, and mostly resist doing so. Why?
> > Because what I am speaking of is spiritual in the truest sense I
> > know and to call it anything else is imho improper. It is also
> > essential if one is to reclaim spirituality from the worst of
> > the luddites and from the conceptual shrinking it into something
> > easily dismissed that too easily misses and disowns what I
> > believe is important in it.
> I don't think that terms are often worth fighting for. But I will
> wax sympathetic here by giving a very parallel case of my own,
> where, perhaps it turns out that I'm doing the same thing as
> you are---or perhaps not.
Terms are the first thing that must be fought for. If politics is war by
other means, think of semantics as a topology of the battlefield that is
fluid underfoot. Who defines the terms of debate determines who occupies
the high ground. He who has the high ground wins the battle.
> > > Now a semanticist might retort, "because the term in question
> > > has so many favorable semantic links, that it's very useful
> > > for the purposes of communication". But if this were the case,
> > > then you'd see people who use terms like "God", "spirituality",
> > > and "synchronicity" qualifying their remarks. In other words,
> > > the terms would always be followed by words like "in the sense
> > > of...", or "-like", or surrounded by scare-quotes. But it
> > > doesn't happen. Why?
> Whenever I mention free will, it is ALWAYS in a context that
> allows me to thoroughly separate myself from people who believe
> in souls, and I vigorously criticize non-materialist beliefs
> as I do so.
There is no need for such to rationally arrive at things like morals and
free will, or to experience wonder at the universe. The Uncertainty
Principle is free will in its purest form, and requires no phlogiston
like 'soul' to prop it up.
> That's maybe what is not parallel in our cases. Do you actively
> separate yourself from all those "luddites" as you called them,
> by also ALWAYS disparaging their beliefs while putting forth
> your own about "spirituality"?
What she and several others have defined here as 'spiritual' is not a
new definition, it has always been an alternative/subset definition of
the term, where you see 'spirit' in terms of 'elan', 'gumption', and
'empathy'. Supernatural need not apply. The extra-physical realm of
circular unverifiable arguments that religion has retreated to in the
modern age is simply a defense mechanism to protect a faulty belief set
against the onset of logic and critical cross examination.
A large part of the population is unable to develop the faculties for
objective logic and cross examination, and in their blindness they
develop weak ideas about the world they keep bumping into but cannot see
for the lack of logical sight, while claiming that their theories are
valid because their sense of touch is better than ours...
The universe is amazing, and we are frightfully small and
inconsequential in it. Much of it we have yet to understand fully, but
the lack of any true gopher holes in the landscape of our knowledge
indicates that there likely is no Wonderland to reach from such
non-existent gopherholes. That doesn't mean the view isn't fine from
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