Jump to content


* * * * * 3 votes

Contemporary Paganism: The Soul


97 replies to this topic

#81 R. Eugene Laughlin

    Board Member

  • Moderators
  • 3,684 posts
  • LocationOregon

Posted 14 May 2018 - 03:37 PM

This thread has been dormant for a couple of years now. I find that my feelings about what's related in the first post to the thread haven't changed much in that time. I invite current readers to review the initial post and respond if you have something to say or ask about it. You can read the rest of the thread as you like, but I'm interested in starting the conversation afresh, so the first post is where the main idea is expressed. Read and reply as you will.
Effectiveness is the Measure of Truth
http://neuromagick.com/
https://www.etsy.com...CraftsEngraving

#82 Spida

    Eternal Return

  • Old Timers
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,149 posts
  • LocationNew England

Posted 27 May 2018 - 12:02 AM

On the initial Post:

The most fundamental form of extrapolation you can perform on this scenario, and of course it is extremely difficult for finite beings to wrap their Heads around Eternity !

If something happens once in an Eternal Context, then it will happen again, or it would not have happened at all !

The problem is the 'transition' because it is an unknown element for the most part, and of course People will always fear the unknown, but via extrapolation and timeframes and lack thereof it can be said that the return of the Soul(Individual) is inevitable otherwise it would not have manifested in the first place ! Ergo, what happens will happen again !
Scribe of the Gods; Somebody get me a fuckin' Violin ! A Journey that has never begun, can never end !

#83 Spida

    Eternal Return

  • Old Timers
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,149 posts
  • LocationNew England

Posted 28 May 2018 - 11:06 AM

For what it's worth, I could have elaborated that a bit more. I would divide the Journey of the Soul into two Aspects/Parts:

The Universal Aspect/Journey of the Soul. This occurs in a finite linear time sequence that is measured in Eons and encapsulated by a larger Eternal Cycle. Reincarnation is a smaller cyclical process that unfolds within this larger but Finite Linear Aspect, e.g. until some level of fullfillment has been attained, for one. Everything begins and Ends with this Universal Aspect, and are restored to the Primordial Godseed along with the other Elemental Infinities.

The Eternal Aspect/Journey. Occurs in a non linear(Eternal) construct that has no beginning or end, and is composed of an Infinity of Universes, that are separated by Eternal States where the Primordial Point is the only Existence - a container of infiities existing outside of four dimensional spacetime of course, although the time element(change), or movement, i.e. the Mind Of God existing within to avoid the dilemma of emergence from a no time paradox, as opposed to time existing as a contigious linear sequence which introdces the problem of infinite regression. We are also dealing with two forms of time here, time within that is experienced as consciousness, and time without that is physical time, i.e. four dimensional spacetime. So it is the latter that ceases, while the mind of the Primordial one persists.

The soul would exist for the duration of the universe, but would undergo periods of non existence as part of the Eternal Cycle, but inevitably always 'returns'. This is the "Eternal Return", or the neverending(but interrupted)Journey of the Soul, or individual aspect of the Infinite One !

Edited by Spida, 28 May 2018 - 11:05 PM.

Scribe of the Gods; Somebody get me a fuckin' Violin ! A Journey that has never begun, can never end !

#84 R. Eugene Laughlin

    Board Member

  • Moderators
  • 3,684 posts
  • LocationOregon

Posted 28 May 2018 - 02:49 PM

 Spida, on 27 May 2018 - 12:02 AM, said:


... it can be said that the return of the Soul(Individual) is inevitable otherwise it would not have manifested in the first place ! Ergo, what happens will happen again !

There's no more weight to that idea than the simple alternative: all things come and go, have a beginning and an end. In ways that matter most, the latter carries more weight because it's apparent in everything. Perhaps even more germane, it's model free, depending on no speculation, no sophistry. It's a simple matter of accepting what we can readily see.
Effectiveness is the Measure of Truth
http://neuromagick.com/
https://www.etsy.com...CraftsEngraving

#85 Topper

    Member

  • Members
  • 47 posts

Posted 28 May 2018 - 04:50 PM

 R. Eugene Laughlin, on 09 March 2015 - 04:02 PM, said:

I've been pondering my spiritual orientation a lot lately. I have for many years embarrassed the Pagan label, but the term makes for such a large umbrella... I think the percentage of shared attitude and practice among my Pagan fellow is probably fairly small, and even where terminology seems to align, the underlying semantics may be deeply divided. While I don't think any of my ideas are completely novel, the collection of ideas may be somewhat unique, especially when digging into the implications that stem from them.

I consider my brand of Paganism to be an Earth-based/Nature-based spiritual orientation. While that's a common report among modern Pagans, after years [of] socializing and conversing with people online and off, it's clear to me that some of the implications I draw from that phrase are quite in the minority. Specifically, my thinking is that we (humans certainly but all living things on Earth) are of the Earth, each category of thing a type of byproduct resulting from the ongoing activity of the biosphere. So far so good.

Where I may differ is that for me, it's lock, stock, and barrel. I embrace the idea that all that I am is of the Earth: body, mind, personality and/or person-hood in all respects. The most immediate implication of that the sense of self I enjoy now is impermanent, and will die when my body dies. I think the more mainstream Pagan view is that the body is of the Earth and that the Earth sustains the body, but it's been my conversational experience that most Pagans assume an extra-body component, which does not depend on the Earth to exist, and is further assumed to be eternal.

My position, stated as the compliment of the above, is that there is nothing of me that is not of the Earth. So the attitude is inconsistent with the notion of a durable soul. I'll leave it there for now, and may engage in a discussion of the practical implications of that attitudinal stance later. In the meantime, comments and questions are welcome.
What I like about this is the impermanent rather than indestructible notion of the soul.Its a diversion away from the mainstream religious models that promise some form of return if you bow down to their God or adhere to their theologically constrained lifestyles.After all,what you see is what you get and the cynical non-spiritual view is that when you die it is the end.No one wants to subscribe to that reality for sure but looking at it from an evidence based angle it is difficult to avoid.Earth to earth,ashes ro ashes..

Sure we can pick from a whole range of hope based eternal life ideas but the reality is always there looming ever nearer.Simple logic tells me religions were constructed out of a basic fear of this reality and the inherent fear of the unknown or uncharted territory beyond death if such exists.
Free from the confines of man made religion we are at least able to formulate our own personal idea of salvation and get together a plan just in case the end aint quite final.
Guess thats what you are mulling over here too.

#86 Orlando

    Member

  • Old Timers
  • 562 posts
  • LocationEngland, UK.

Posted 29 May 2018 - 03:39 AM

There are some schools of occult thought that believe physical death will also be the end of the spirit and the soul eventually; unless one cultivates the spirit and soul together, to transcend death.

Evola’s UR Group was one such group with that belief. Their method to transcend death was their interpretation of spiritual Alchemy.

Others, such as Paul Foster Case, who was also heavily ‘into’ Alchemy, on the other hand, believed that the soul is eternal.

Edited by Orlando, 29 May 2018 - 03:43 AM.


#87 Spida

    Eternal Return

  • Old Timers
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,149 posts
  • LocationNew England

Posted 29 May 2018 - 08:27 AM

View PostR. Eugene Laughlin, on 28 May 2018 - 02:49 PM, said:

There's no more weight to that idea than the simple alternative: all things come and go, have a beginning and an end. In ways that matter most, the latter carries more weight because it's apparent in everything. Perhaps even more germane, it's model free, depending on no speculation, no sophistry. It's a simple matter of accepting what we can readily see.

It is true and quite evident that most things "have a beginning and an end", including the Earth, and ultimately the Universe. Science must even be relied upon to establish a Chronology of Cosmology, and beyond that is primarily for the sake of the Theoretic, and the Academic, and there is nothing wrong with that in the absence of personal bias, and agendas - a major influence I would say which I try to stay clear of.

In my area of the Occult however since I am already immersed in the Arena of Existential Origins, Something from Nothing and the like, and while it is true that "Things come and go", one may also ask: But where exactly do they go? And also where did they come from? Regardless of the answer, it is truly a Miracle, or perhaps even better: Magical !

As far as the conclusion of "accepting what we can readily see". Even although it may not appear that way, this is basically how I arrived at this idea of "Eternal Recurrence". I then later discovered the mention of this by others; namely Friedrich Nietzsche.

It all begins with what I know and can observe at a most basic level, and the idea comes to fruition when contemplated in the context of nonlinear time, i.e. Eternity. Of course one needs to believe in Eternity, and see it as I do.

I can agree with the "things coming and going", but if you tell me that a thing(even identical) will only come and go "one time" within a timeless realm where numbers have no value other than within the inner finite models that are perpetually generated by it - this Eternal Beast ! Well now, that is where we would differ.

Death still remains very real ! And I am in no way trying to sugar coat it the way others have done. This is just the way the pieces of the puzzle happen to be falling together for me at the present. My paradigm has fluctuated some in the past, and I would call it an evolving paradigm, although as of late I believe it is stabilizing somewhat with no significant changes, but more like elaborations and expansions. Doesn't mean it's right, but it feels that way and I do always try to remain reasonable and rational about things.

Edited by Spida, 29 May 2018 - 08:29 AM.

Scribe of the Gods; Somebody get me a fuckin' Violin ! A Journey that has never begun, can never end !

#88 Sheperdess

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 511 posts
  • LocationIn your head

Posted 29 May 2018 - 09:41 AM

View PostOrlando, on 29 May 2018 - 03:39 AM, said:

There are some schools of occult thought that believe physical death will also be the end of the spirit and the soul eventually; unless one cultivates the spirit and soul together, to transcend death.

Evola’s UR Group was one such group with that belief. Their method to transcend death was their interpretation of spiritual Alchemy.

Others, such as Paul Foster Case, who was also heavily ‘into’ Alchemy, on the other hand, believed that the soul is eternal.
What are your own views on this? Good to see you back BTW :)

Posted Image Touch not the cat without a glove


#89 R. Eugene Laughlin

    Board Member

  • Moderators
  • 3,684 posts
  • LocationOregon

Posted 29 May 2018 - 05:17 PM

View PostTopper, on 28 May 2018 - 04:50 PM, said:

Free from the confines of man made religion we are at least able to formulate our own personal idea of salvation and get together a plan just in case the end aint quite final.
Guess thats what you are mulling over here too.

That's not the track I'm on, not at all. Most modern (Western) Paganish movements reject the notion that we're born wrecked and must therefore be salvaged, but few make the effort necessary to recognize the undercurrents of the salvation idea in their own thinking. They are, in some sense, too commonplace, too deeply ingrained in Western languages and culture to even occur as a thing. Here's a thumbnail sketch to consider:

Starting from the philosophical roots from which the salvation notion grew, somewhere along the way this idea emerged: the body is of the earth (small "e") but the real person is not. The precursor and companion ideas are 1) there's a place/state where things are perfect or ideal, an origin if you will, 2) that along the path of manifestation from the Ideal State to manifest form on this earth, all things become less and less perfect, an inevitable process of corruption is presumed, and 3) the body and its attending drives, being of the earth, are an obstacle to re-attaining the original state of Perfection (safe return of the soul).

Those seed ideas come to flower most fully in the various strains of Christianity, some of the fullest expressions are most evident in certain Protestant sects. For example, people are taught to be ashamed of their body from birth. That's big, because the sense of shame takes root much earlier in life than the ability to form episodic memories. So without a memory of having learned it, people assume the shame they feel is innate, a core component to their being, etc. More generally, the Christian teachings equate the very drives that make our ongoing existence possible with the roots of sin. Spiritual growth within the most extremist strains of Christianity is equated to an ever-deepening sense of self-loathing. In fairness, some of the more moderate sects of Christianity, the ones that train their clergy in modern psychological science along with the rest of their curriculum, recognize that self-loathing is a health risk no matter how it starts, so they're actively combating it. It's inextricably embedded in their dogma though, so it will ever be an uphill battle for them.

I can't imagine what Pagan value is served by feeling shame of ones own body. And, it's perhaps the most telling of how disconnected many if not most self-styled Pagans are from [what I understand as] reasonably Pagan ideals. Just plan a Pagan gathering with a sky clad option and see what happens. For me, a Pagan who doesn't confront any body shame they feel is no kind of Pagan at all.

While it's somewhat more complex than body shame, I feel the same way about self-styled Pagans clinging to the durable soul idea.

I think most readers here are too young to know much about it first hand, and it isn't discussed much in current internet discussion, but the earliest brands of Neopaganism (late 1950's into the 70's) did engage practices designed to help people free themselves from culturally-perpetuated unPagan (mostly Christian) currents that run down in the floorboards of their thoughts and feelings. Huson's Master Witchcraft (1970), as a handy example, included a reading of the Lord's Prayer backwards (intentional blasphemy) as part of a self initiation idea for would-be solitary witches. Most of the durable covens that lasted into the 1970's and some of their spin offs included comparable elements in their grade work and initiations. So few of those groups survive unbroken to the present day, in the face of the ready access to the ever-increasing mass of information that has made Eclectic Solitaryism seem evermore viable.

As a side note that is tangentially related, the loss of initiation as a mode of self-transformation hinted at above is lamentable in some respects. A key concept of spiritual/magical initiation is to instantiate a change in the individual that the individual couldn't manage on their own steam. The handy example here would be a person who feels shame to stand naked before peers one day, and does not feel the shame of it the next day. While I do believe that all such transformations are technically within the reach of any unaided individual, I think the probability of it happening without initiation is likely to be lower, or at least the process would much more arduous.

That aside, the focus for Contemporary Paganism might reasonably shift from a central aim at identifiable Christian notions to any notion that leads to a conceptual separation between the individual and the world in which they live. To my mind, the durable soul concept has plenty of non-Christian iterations these days, yet people cling to it as tightly as ever. That includes the oddly Westernized Easternism that has become so prominent in the current Post-Information Age.
Effectiveness is the Measure of Truth
http://neuromagick.com/
https://www.etsy.com...CraftsEngraving

#90 Topper

    Member

  • Members
  • 47 posts

Posted 29 May 2018 - 07:38 PM

I was wondering on how you would reconcile Paganism with "there is nothing of me that is not of the Earth. So the attitude is inconsistent with the notion of a durable soul" in line with contemporary thought rather than the philosophical roots of the path itself.But thanks for the clarification.

#91 R. Eugene Laughlin

    Board Member

  • Moderators
  • 3,684 posts
  • LocationOregon

Posted 29 May 2018 - 10:01 PM

View PostTopper, on 29 May 2018 - 07:38 PM, said:

So the attitude is inconsistent with the notion of a durable soul" in line with contemporary thought rather than the philosophical roots of the path itself.

If you equate Platonic thought and Plato's intellectual offspring to Pagan, I'm clearly diverging from that, largely because Platonic thought and the Abrahamic tracks share common roots and both seem to lead to some form denial or rejection of the body and the nature that sustains it as inherently corrupt. That's about as unpagan as it gets, for me.

I think a better Paganism for living people can be derived in the present, from the natural dynamics of the world in which we live, right here, right now, without appeal to tradition of any sort.

That's not to say that there's nothing of value for Contemporary Pagans to gain from studying Plato. It's a valuable study for reasons I hope I've already demonstrated.

Edited by R. Eugene Laughlin, 29 May 2018 - 10:10 PM.

Effectiveness is the Measure of Truth
http://neuromagick.com/
https://www.etsy.com...CraftsEngraving

#92 Sheperdess

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 511 posts
  • LocationIn your head

Posted 29 May 2018 - 10:18 PM

View PostR. Eugene Laughlin, on 29 May 2018 - 10:01 PM, said:

If you equate Platonic thought and Plato's intellectual offspring to Pagan, I'm clearly diverging from that, largely because Platonic thought and the Abrahamic tracks share common roots and both seem to lead to some form denial or rejection of the body and the nature that sustains it as inherently corrupt. That's about as unpagan as it gets, for me.

I think a better Paganism for living people can be derived in the present, from the natural dynamics of the world in which we live, right here, right now, without appeal to tradition of any sort.

That's not to say that there's nothing of value for Contemporary Pagans to gain from studying Plato. It's a valuable study for reasons I hope I've already demonstrated.
Considering this,would you recommend any contemporary ie reflecting todays Pagan movement,works or papers that may express views closer to your owm rather than the thoughts of the Platonist?

Posted Image Touch not the cat without a glove


#93 Spida

    Eternal Return

  • Old Timers
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,149 posts
  • LocationNew England

Posted 30 May 2018 - 03:59 AM

View PostR. Eugene Laughlin, on 09 March 2015 - 04:02 PM, said:

Where I may differ is that for me, it's lock, stock, and barrel. I embrace the idea that all that I am is of the Earth: body, mind, personality and/or person-hood in all respects. The most immediate implication of that the sense of self I enjoy now is impermanent, and will die when my body dies.

So the above is an interesting facet of Mr. Laughlin's Initial Post, and reminiscent of an alternative I entertained some years ago - a Fork in the Road, as it were.

This forms a couple different scenarios for the Soul/Consciousness that I would compile as a Dual Classification since these appear to be the only options resulting in no less than a Logical Tautology of either the Soul is Durable, or the Soul is not Durable.

So we have the "Durable Soul", and its' Inverse, which I would refer to as the "Emergent Soul" that as the Title implies 'Emerges' as a sort of(last I knew)Mysterious Biological Process at some point following Conception.

Oddly enough, neither of these affect Eternal Recurrence as it is reliant only on the repetition of an Identical Circumstance/Condition arising from a mix of Linear, Non Linear, Existential, and Non Existential Modes.

EDIT:

Okay so maybe Three Scenarios: The Emergent Soul/Consciousness, The Durable Soul, and The Recurring Soul/Individual. That's good enough, I'll leave the above as is.

Edited by Spida, 30 May 2018 - 05:09 AM.

Scribe of the Gods; Somebody get me a fuckin' Violin ! A Journey that has never begun, can never end !

#94 R. Eugene Laughlin

    Board Member

  • Moderators
  • 3,684 posts
  • LocationOregon

Posted 30 May 2018 - 05:05 PM

View PostSheperdess, on 29 May 2018 - 10:18 PM, said:

Considering this,would you recommend any contemporary ie reflecting todays Pagan movement,works or papers that may express views closer to your owm rather than the thoughts of the Platonist?

I'm relating the contents of my heart in this thread, though I am very widely read and don't doubt that some of those contents have been influenced by others' ideas. To me, the idea that we're born as we should be, as opposed to the idea that we're born flawed and in need of fixing is probably expressed by many modern Paganish authors, in the context of discussing the Christian concept of salvation for example. Yet the same author may also promote ritual purification, and ideas related to the Neoplatonic safe return of the soul, etc. without realizing they're drinking from the same well as the Salvationists.

The fact that ritual purification is common in many ancient traditions, and may have come about for reasons that aren't related at all to Platonic/Abrahamic notions of a corruption really doesn't matter, because the Platonic/Abrahamic connotations are so deeply ingrained in Western languages and culture, the modern seeker can't reasonably use the ancient traditions the way that the ancients did. Without launching into a boring technical dissertation on the subject, I'll leave at this: the connotations embedded in ones language and culture has a massive impact on how one processes information, and changing that is not a simple matter of making a decision.

I expect that there are articles in the annals of the anthropology and history of religion that bear on the ideas I'm expressing in this thread, and I'm certain there is relevant psychological literature to bring to bear, but I would not expect anyone but me to synthesize such sources that way I am or would. After all, I lived what I considered to be a Pagan lifestyle for a good 20 years before I even started on a formal education that included anthropology, history, and psychology. Once I started in on that, I spent 13 years at it (4 undergrad, 6 graduate, 3 post doc). It's more than fair to say that the education changed my perspective of what it means live a Pagan lifestyle, though. My conception is still forming though. I don't have a viable dissertation to present. That's why I'm trying to discuss it in these forums. I've always found discussion to be a clarifying exercise.

The idea I'm working with now is that Reconstructionist and Eclectic Paganisms are more or less doomed to reiterate the Platonic/Abrahamic themes, merely dressed up in Pagan clothing so to speak. The simplified reasons stated above will have to suffice for now. But by way of analogy, consider the common Western conception of Karma, when removed from its original context and placed in the hands of European-based culture: there the concept equates to what ye sow, so shall ye reap. While it is possible to gain a more accurate conception of what the term meant to the people who coin it, there's no way to get it the way that a natural born inheritor gets it. Here's why: their brain went though its initial development with that concept deeply ingrained in their language and culture. And, the same concept is not embedded in the languages and cultures of Europe. While we do continue to learn and change throughout life, initial brain development matters, and the languages and culture in play during that development matters.

The Contemporary Derivational Paganism I loosely envision won't be automatically immune to those same dynamics. I believe they'll have to be addressed more behaviorally than philosophically, but I don't know. I want to keep talking about it with people for now.

Edited by R. Eugene Laughlin, 30 May 2018 - 05:25 PM.

Effectiveness is the Measure of Truth
http://neuromagick.com/
https://www.etsy.com...CraftsEngraving

#95 Sheperdess

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 511 posts
  • LocationIn your head

Posted 30 May 2018 - 06:14 PM

I dont think a dissertation is needed when we are talking from the heart.This remind me once that Violet had said post-graduates are the least spiritual people you are likely to meet.Later on I was seeing this in my own group with those of academic background struggling to connect with spiritual ideas and mysticism.I think by default these institution breed over analytic approach to everything.
Reconstruction of any path is of course never the same with the feelings of those who were there in vastly different times so we adapt best we can based on what we have at hand while trying to work in the older original way using texts and in my case,oral tradition and lore passed down.If we connect and get results this is no less valid than the original but if we find our efforts bear no fruit we should eventually move on not tire ourselves trying to fix it forever.

Accepted modern notions are difficult to erase and one stumbling block is that people stereotype so they approach a path not in their own thoughts but conforming to what they think is expected of them to experience.My example is that the masses think witchcraft is a Pagan path and this could be true if you were unaware that witchcraft is a path in its own right not borrowing from others like the modern Wicca or Traditional Witchcraft have to do.
So with beginners we ask what they personally experienced after a basic Circle rite in the woodland.The answer is usually they heard an Owl,saw a vision of a goddess or felt something touch them.
OK,These answers are what they thought I wanted to hear when really I expected them at that stage to report very little.

So if I identify as a witch the word itself is given by others to define me and apply later stereotypical traits to my existence.If then I do not conform to their expectations they may conclude I am not a witch at all or maybe not a 'real' one.If we translate this on to our search to find ourselves expectations must be our own and we must ditch lingering doubts that this or that will not fit.The most satisfactory path for me is the one that brings results in the here and now.Philosophy and Mystical contemplation have their place but should not be a permanent crutch on which we support our spirituality.

Posted Image Touch not the cat without a glove


#96 Topper

    Member

  • Members
  • 47 posts

Posted 31 May 2018 - 10:00 AM

On reflection I am probably guilty in the past of conforming to what I Ithought I should be doing or what I should be reading in an Occult sense.This is possibly a big problem for beginners who if they aint aware of it will never be addressed and so remains an invisible hurdle throughout their life.Guess the true Adept left all that behind yonks ago and progressed into higher realms of realisation.

I contemplate a difficult path that modern life dictates had to be adapted,not re-written to suit but adapted to give a realistic chance of success,If I fail it will be down to me.No excuses or apportioning blame to this or that.No ego inspired cop outs or fear instilled refusal to accept defeat in case of ridicule from others.

I was reminded very recently that Andrew Chumbley had termed his undertakings the 'Path of One' and however we may interpret that it should be a sign post guiding our magical quest.

#97 Orlando

    Member

  • Old Timers
  • 562 posts
  • LocationEngland, UK.

Posted 04 June 2018 - 03:43 AM

 Sheperdess, on 29 May 2018 - 09:41 AM, said:

What are your own views on this? Good to see you back BTW :)

My thoughts on the matter, Sheperdess, is that I do not know the truth of it, for I'm not advanced enough.

The idea that the natural state of mankind is to die and be gone, and that therefore to survive death would take a considerable effort, puts a kind of urgency on the matter to get cracking on with the Great Work. With this theory I have probably left it far too late, and shall probably pass on into oblivion with the majority of mankind.

With the other idea that the Soul is eternal, well that would give me considerable more time to improve myself.

I am open to many other ideas and theories, not just the two mentioned above.

What is important though, regardless of the truth of the matter, is to keep on practising the Great Work.

Edited by Orlando, 04 June 2018 - 03:48 AM.


#98 Sheperdess

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 511 posts
  • LocationIn your head

Posted 04 June 2018 - 09:57 AM

 Orlando, on 04 June 2018 - 03:43 AM, said:

My thoughts on the matter, Sheperdess, is that I do not know the truth of it, for I'm not advanced enough.

The idea that the natural state of mankind is to die and be gone, and that therefore to survive death would take a considerable effort, puts a kind of urgency on the matter to get cracking on with the Great Work. With this theory I have probably left it far too late, and shall probably pass on into oblivion with the majority of mankind.

With the other idea that the Soul is eternal, well that would give me considerable more time to improve myself.

I am open to many other ideas and theories, not just the two mentioned above.

What is important though, regardless of the truth of the matter, is to keep on practising the Great Work.
I like this honest reply with the clear way you write.In truth also no one knows what happen after death so this is the reason for Religions to offer hope that a God somewhere will help us think death is not final.
So my own path teaches of an eternal life in the way of a belief we are as witches carrying another (Eternal) blood that exists within the regular blood.This is a weird idea that is not usually found.For the critic it will be just another hope for survival like Resurection,Re-Incarnation,Eternal life sat next to Jesus and other BS thought up by desperate people.
Of most importance is as you say to pursue the Great Work because as Stephen Hawking said once the human race is not geared up to the survival of the species and we see he is correct with everyday people killing one another often because of Religious belief that is not agreed by someone.
I know it is cynic like to say,well if these dead have Eternal life then where are they? Who has come back from the grave to enligten us of the Afterlife?

In reality what happen after death is uincertain and it was written on a Celtic stone I saw once with a spiral saying Eternity will either save us or destroy us.It was interesting with that was a symbol of three circles linked which says for the Celtic belief,Past,Present and Future are as one.That takes some thinking about as a mystery.

Another idea I like was the almost forgotten belief on the Ancient Briton so in their cult of the Sun they believed that when the Sun went down at the end of the day it travelled into the Underworld,was reborn in the North before risin like new next day,With this they worked to link with the Sun and also they light fires to help its return in hoping they too would at the end follow that Suns journey and rise again.I think Christianity got the idea partly from this with the Son replacing the Sun.

So this Great Work is taken up by those who have freed themselve from the bondage of Religion to pursue their own Truth and find themselves.

Posted Image Touch not the cat without a glove






1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users