I have notebooks and scraps of paper everywhere. In fact, I even have things written on the walls of my office at home, as Dilys knows. Today I’m going to rifle through them and empty out my “down box.”
I’ve got a big stack right here in front of me. I’ll just start at the top and go from there. (Why do I feel like Andy Rooney doing a piece on junk mail?)
Let’s see. A couple of possibly direct quotes from Schuon, “God does not give the gift of intelligence only to require you to admit what is contrary to it,” and “if everyone were capable of understanding metaphysics, there would be no atheists.”
Ah, here is a very subtle point by Schuon, which, if you can grasp it, does indeed prove the metaphysical necessity of God: “An indefinitely augmentable beauty is meaningless and empties the very idea of beauty of its content.” In short, if there is no hierarchy that is conditioned from the top down, there is no beauty, and if beauty exists, there is a hierarchy conditioned from the top down. We can discern relative degrees of perfection only in light of the Absolute. In this way, the relative world proves the Absolute, otherwise we would truly live in a meaningless, arbitrary, and indistinguishible mass of flatland nothingness, like the university.
Another good quote: “The man who is integrally mature always keeps in equilibrium with wisdom the qualities of simplicity and freshness, gratitude and trust, that he possessed in the springtime of his life.”
Questions for Petey: “How is it that we are not trapped within our own nervous system?,” and “How is it that the cosmos continually surpasses itself?” Nah, too obvious.
Here’s a note to myself: “In any field above the level of the hard sciences, there is a huge difference between received knowledge and realized knowledge, so much so that to treat realized knowledge as if it can be received knowledge is to convert it to a lie and render it sterile, as do both atheists and false teachers.... One cannot replace concrete experience with abstract, secondary theory, without inhabiting a false and reified version of reality.”
But “this is what intellectuals habitually do -- i.e., live in their abstractions, and there is no theory more abstract than atheism, for it entirely superimposes a sterile dogma over the mystery of being. While this ground is a mystery, it is not an absurdity because it is infused with the very same logos that illuminates the mind and allows us to comprehend it. We see beauty or know truth because both are logos calling out to logos.”
Likewise, we may know God because God, who is infinitely distant from us, at the same time radiates to the perimeter of creation, where the breath of Spirit whispers to the divine spark hidden in the depths of our heart. This divine spark is far too beautiful to be untrue.
As you age, you have more time, not less -- the fullness of time, the wealth of time, the dense interconnectedness of time that the young cannot see. They have only duration. Spiritual growth converts duration to time and time to eternity, and then pours eternity back into duration. You're again like a child, only knowing the place for the first time.
Here are some notes taken while reading Richard Weaver’s Ideas Have Consequences. Sort of sums up the book: “Without imagination the world is simply a brute fact -- there is nothing to spiritualize it. In the flight from the center to the periphery, one becomes lost in details which cannot be understood. Fragmentation leads to obsession with parts. Downward pull that puts an end to ideational life. Specialization leads to deformity. World shrinks. As compensation, modern man is puffed up with vanity of being able to describe some minute portion of the world. Modernism is provincialism.”
More notes on Weaver: “Truth is an antecedent reality perceived by the intellect and not the senses. Denying universals denies everything transcending experience, therefore denial of truth and acceptance of relativism. Immersion in matter makes man unfit to deal with the problems of matter. Facts are substituted for truth, but there is no knowledge at the level of sensation. Facts do not speak for themselves and experience cannot tell us what we are experiencing. The world is our primary datum, but we do not end our days with a wealth of sense impressions.”
“The problem with this generation is that it has not read the minutes of the last meeting” (Weaver, anticipating dailykos).
“How can men who disagree on what the world is for agree on the minutiae of daily conduct?” (Weaver).
Egalitarianism creates a tyrannical flatland in which the same law applies to the ox and the lion, and is therefore a disorganizing concept which assures injustice.
The separation of knowledge from religion is the separation of facts and knowledge from metaphysics.
An ontological reality called integration must precede the human personality, just as wholeness must be anterior to natural selection.
Man’s real freedom is in the dimension of height and depth.
Like a neurotic patient, history acts out what it cannot remember.
Ever since language began colonizing the brain, it has been an unending task to synthesize all those bits into a coherent self.
Liberals are always rushing to non-judgment.
Life is to matter as mind is to brain as God is to existence.
Getting paid for doing what you like is like finding a self-replicating dollar bill.
When language is unhinged from reality, evolution is as static as a dog’s bark. This explains Ted Kennedy.
Culture is personal error squared.
If you’re not eccentric, you’re probably not living your individuality, which is to say, living.
You can substantially increase your freedom if you only stop endowing things with the spurious attractiveness needed to make pursuing them worth the trouble. Few things are worth doing as well as they can be done.
Spiritual practice is arranging your own birth.
We must always have at least a few people to live at the edge of sanctioned reality and keep an eye on eternity. I wish my in-laws would understand this.
Science reduces the world to a coherent absurdity, psychosis to an incoherent absurdity, myth to an incoherent non-absurdity, metaphysics to a coherent non-absurdity.
Higher realties do not stand out except to those who stand in them.
Mystepistemology: the study of how one may obtain reliable unknowing.
Factsimian: a human who reduces truth to fact and therefore sinks beneath his humanness.
Absolute victimhood corrupts absolutely. The left creates gold-plated victims in order to make their unpalatable ideas immune from argument.
For thousands of years mankind was lost in the circle only to become lost in the line. Religion is here to show us the spiral.
Discovering the true self behind the ego is a de-mask-us experience.
Let's face it, if you don't awaken to your higher self, that old saying is true: life is a Nancy Pelosi and then you die.
That felt good. Nothing like an empty desk to feel unburdened. Or as Lao Tsu said to Andy Rooney,
Empty yourself of everything.
Let the mind rest at peace....
In the pursuit of learning, every day something is acquired.
In the pursuit of Tao, every day something is dropped.