Friday, December 28, 2007

Acquisition 2: Usher in the New Age atheism was on shaky ground. My neighbor and I became friends and she introduced me to some new age views of spirituality. She and I were discussing the realm of morality. I was expressing my belief in the sanctity of life (one should not kill) and she asked me how I knew what was moral and what was not if there was no god. I didn’t know how to answer her then, but I will answer in a later post. She wasn’t saying the Abrahamic God was the one true god, but that our spirit has a higher purpose for us in life. It sounded pretty good to me. I tried on some of those beliefs and values. had Gary Zukav on her show several times and he made sense to me. I read Seat of the Soul, and developed my spirituality. I tried to find out as much as I could about Buddhism. I even had a couple of e-mail pals who were Buddhists. One was Chinese and could barely speak English, the other in Australia and didn’t know what to write about Buddhism except that it wasn’t really a religion, just a philosophy of life. Buddhism is practiced differently around the world. In some places, it really is a religion with gods and all, and in some places, it is a philosophy. I suppose I should read something written by the Dali Lama. was working with profoundly disabled children at that time. These are children who never give up and have a strength of spirit that you don’t see anywhere else. If there was/is a god, surely they are the closest people to it. It is the only place in my life where I have been unconditionally accepted. It is from these children that I learned what unconditional acceptance really means. If you don’t know, the only way to learn is to get to know someone who is severely mentally disabled. internet has been my greatest source of information for the past three or four years. It is a fast and unrivaled medium in which to share belief systems with people all over the world. I chased down leads on spirituality through the Near Death Experience web site. It sounded beautiful and perfect to me. The teachers of new age spirituality, however, left much to be desired. They seem to suffer from the same self righteous mentality that I saw in the Christians I was so angry with.

I started this blog to document my travels toward knowing. Spiritual Journey documents what I learned about the new age teachers I found on the internet. I toyed with what it might be like to be god in Lonely Dreamer. I read a few books, and finally realized that the path of new age spirituality was a dead end. I wrote about what I learned reading about Richard Rose in Misguided Pupil, and my disappointment in what I was learning about new age spiritual leaders in Enlightenment.

They seem to have an existential view of being. Thy talk about how people aren’t living and that everything they think they know is an illusion. In order to be, one must stop living the lie of their existence. I can agree with this to the extent that people rely on cognitive heuristics so much in life that they never doubt that they are not cognizant enough to know why thy believe what they do.

One of my most unpleasant experiences was an online altercation I had with a man named Eddie Traversa who insisted that all parents who take their children to see Santa were abusive parents. I disagreed with him and he ended up telling me, in so many words, that I was too stupid to know what I was talking about, and if I took my kids to see Santa, I was a long way from being “enlightened”. It was this altercation that ended my search for new age spirituality. I wrote about my state of mind at the time in Synchronicity.

My duality was still strong, however, and I didn’t give up on my own spirit. I didn’t believe there was a god that created everything; I just believed that God was the energy that flows through the universe. God was an all accepting all loving energy. In fact, by any religious definition, God wasn’t really a God. answer to the question changed to: “I am an Agnostic.” It’s a fairly safe place to be. Flip flopping back and forth, waxing and waning atheism, and refusing to make up my mind couldn’t last, however. I needed to understand more. I needed to know why I felt the duality that kept me from making a choice.


  1. I flip flop to! There is so much information out there as you say.

  2. Cheri, I think "I am an Agnostic" is the only answer a reasonable person can give, if they're not sure about any religion in particular. To deny the possibility of a spiritual being beyond our comprehension seems too close-minded to me, but to try and define precisely what that might be, ultimately, proved foolish. At least, in my case.

    As you continue to explore Buddhist thought, and while you're reading the Dalai Lama, find Alan Watts. He's considered by many to be the father of American Buddhism. Also, he's very easy to read.
    Buddha always seemed like my kind of guy, the kind of guy who would always help you move, even though he were homeless, and would make you soup if you were sick. It's too bad that I'm so attached to material comfort, or I'd be likely to head off to a mountain to think about what he had to say.

  3. Taoists believe that "God" is the energy that encompasses all things. That is, in fact, the Tao. It unites everything; it is everything. And it is nothing. :-) Sounds like you might lean towards Taoism. Maybe with a little pagan and/or druid thrown in for kicks and giggles? ;-)

    I once met a VERY old sycamore tree in Seville. It had a lot to say to me, but I wasn't quite ready to listen. Trees cleanse my soul.

  4. I just wrote the worlds best comment, but I wasn't logged in. It was great, I talked about my opinoin of weather there was an afterlife and what happens to us. It was very insightful. Its one of the few totally original thoughts I have. It's so logical, we are our ego's, our ego's are a product of the interreaction of our brain cells.

    The actual matter never goes anywhere but the information is lost when our brain cells die. At what point are we alive, when the sperm meets the egg. The first cell division. No way. We are gradually born and we will gradually die.

  5. Everyone's path is different and separate. I do not submit to any mainstream religions, basically because I think we have been grossly misinformed about divine energy.

    Trust yourself and your intuition and never worry about feeling like your out of the norm. BUT, if religion works for you, then go with it. I think the mainstream religions prevents one from knowledge and experiences and keeps you in a "box" so to speak. How can one grow if your living in a box?

    Peace and wisdom,