Lucid Dreaming and Religion

For all other chat which isn't directly related to lucid dreaming and the world of sleep and dreams.
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Summerlander
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby Summerlander » 24 Aug 2017 01:03

The argument for God here is based on the following specious and gilded assertion which almost tries to pass off our current epistemological limits for evidence of a Creator who conceals Himself: There must be a supernatural cause to our universe which remains hidden to our senses. But this is still pure conjecture!

I'll draw an analogy to illustrate what's going on in the article ...

Imagine a team of zoologists following a trail of footprints made by some kind of prosimian. The footprints suddenly cease near a group of trees and the scientists scratch their heads. Some say the footprints are evidence of a new species of monkey that must have wings and decided to take off in flight at the point where the marks cease. But the more forensically-minded peers remonstrate such assertion to fly in the face of what truly defines evidence and reason. As they look around for real evidence, they request that the whole team ponder upon how much one can really claim to know. 'What is the most plausible explanation?' they ask as everyone is reminded that a winged monkey has never been spotted and that many carnivorous predators which live in the woods could have devoured a conventional monkey where the footprints disappear. 'Well, you have no proof that such fate befell the creature,' the flying-monkey enthusiasts retort. 'Conclusively, no, we don't,' the flying-monkey disbelievers respond, 'But we know such is possible and we have recorded species falling prey to other species before. And by the way, look at these trees; the prosimian could have jumped----not flown---onto those nearby branches ...'

The cause of the universe need not be an independent, complex and intelligent one---otherwise we have the same problem all over again: Who or what created a Creator that by definition has to be more complex than His creation, and who/what created the Creator's creator ad infinitum? Perhaps things exist because, naturally, they must. Remember that it is very hard to imagine or even conceive absolute nothingness (no space and time). Real nothing can only exist subjectively as defined by something: our minds perceive nothing to be between two objects attached to each other; if both objects touch, there is no space and no time between them---no distance ... nothing! Furthermore, physicists tell us that states of nothingness at the subatomic level are so unstable and improbable that the probability for something to emerge ex nihilo is too great: hence the Big Bang and Hubble's law of indefinite spatial expansion. No deities required.

We can assume that sages like Kapila co-authored the Vedas. The source of knowledge is not some god, it is (as we can empirically ascertain) the way in which the rest of the universe interacts with---and impacts upon---sentient beings such as ourselves. We know things because we are organisms which are naturally capable of gleaning information from our environment through sensory input and data retention. No supernatural source required! To claim that one must exist is to ignore much of what we learned about evolutionary biology and neurophysiology.

To paraphrase and expound upon what Zimmerman in Fargo said, quantum theory defines our reality as a range of particles that clash in various ways. Sometimes they appear to clash in meaningful ways; objectively, however, such impressive clashes hold as much import as any other---and this is the reason why Voltaire's Persian sage slammed the door on an impressionable Candide and his philosophical friends at the end of the novella ... 8-)
"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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LoneDreamer
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby LoneDreamer » 24 Aug 2017 02:10

Summerlander wrote:The argument for God here is based on the following specious and gilded assertion which almost tries to pass off our current epistemological limits for evidence of a Creator who conceals Himself: There must be a supernatural cause to our universe which remains hidden to our senses. But this is still pure conjecture!

I'll draw an analogy to illustrate what's going on in the article ...

Imagine a team of zoologists following a trail of footprints made by some kind of prosimian. The footprints suddenly cease near a group of trees and the scientists scratch their heads. Some say the footprints are evidence of a new species of monkey that must have wings and decided to take off in flight at the point where the marks cease. But the more forensically-minded peers remonstrate such assertion to fly in the face of what truly defines evidence and reason. As they look around for real evidence, they request that the whole team ponder upon how much one can really claim to know. 'What is the most plausible explanation?' they ask as everyone is reminded that a winged monkey has never been spotted and that many carnivorous predators which live in the woods could have devoured a conventional monkey where the footprints disappear. 'Well, you have no proof that such fate befell the creature,' the flying-monkey enthusiasts retort. 'Conclusively, no, we don't,' the flying-monkey disbelievers respond, 'But we know such is possible and we have recorded species falling prey to other species before. And by the way, look at these trees; the prosimian could have jumped----not flown---onto those nearby branches ...'

The cause of the universe need not be an independent, complex and intelligent one---otherwise we have the same problem all over again: Who or what created a Creator that by definition has to be more complex than His creation, and who/what created the Creator's creator ad infinitum? Perhaps things exist because, naturally, they must. Remember that it is very hard to imagine or even conceive absolute nothingness (no space and time). Real nothing can only exist subjectively as defined by something: our minds perceive nothing to be between two objects attached to each other; if both objects touch, there is no space and no time between them---no distance ... nothing! Furthermore, physicists tell us that states of nothingness at the subatomic level are so unstable and improbable that the probability for something to emerge ex nihilo is too great: hence the Big Bang and Hubble's law of indefinite spatial expansion. No deities required.

We can assume that sages like Kapila co-authored the Vedas. The source of knowledge is not some god, it is (as we can empirically ascertain) the way in which the rest of the universe interacts with---and impacts upon---sentient beings such as ourselves. We know things because we are organisms which are naturally capable of gleaning information from our environment through sensory input and data retention. No supernatural source required! To claim that one must exist is to ignore much of what we learned about evolutionary biology and neurophysiology.

To paraphrase and expound upon what Zimmerman in Fargo said, quantum theory defines our reality as a range of particles that clash in various ways. Sometimes they appear to clash in meaningful ways; objectively, however, such impressive clashes hold as much import as any other---and this is the reason why Voltaire's Persian sage slammed the door on an impressionable Candide and his philosophical friends at the end of the novella ... 8-)

Well, now I can understand. But can you simplify each sentence in the link and post it here? You know, I want to read it myself. Its not necessary. Just asking. :mrgreen:

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LoneDreamer
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby LoneDreamer » 24 Aug 2017 17:15

I am not religious. But even then my religion doesn't care about what I do in sleep. Why should it? :)

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Summerlander
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby Summerlander » 29 Aug 2017 20:29

Well, now I can understand. But can you simplify each sentence in the link and post it here? You know, I want to read it myself. Its not necessary. Just asking.


I've got three kids and a political tome to read. Sorry. :mrgreen:
"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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LoneDreamer
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby LoneDreamer » 30 Aug 2017 04:47

Summerlander wrote:I've got three kids and a political tome to read. Sorry. :mrgreen:

No problem. :) I will figure it out myself.

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Summerlander
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby Summerlander » 01 Dec 2017 07:18

You do that. 8-)
"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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Summerlander
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby Summerlander » 14 Dec 2017 22:21

Brain freeze too. 8-)
"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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RedKryptonite
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby RedKryptonite » 03 Jan 2018 07:17

DreamerMan99 wrote:Oblivion would be better than rebirth in a realm where you have everything forever. How many years in a world with everything would pass before you've done it all and are completely miserable? What does love mean when that person can be around you for not hundreds, not thousands, but infinite amount of years? The idea of Heaven has always seemed more like Hell to me.

Even Hell. How many years of torture and pain do you need before the ego completely dissociates from the mind and you simply become nothing.

I remember in a videogame I once played, Skyrim, there was this plane of existence where souls were banished for an eternity. They would be there so long that they'd become mad hollows and eventually just no longer have any recollection of what they were, what was important to them, where they were.

Honestly,the only kind of "heaven" that I can imagine would be possible without eventual boredom is the kind where you're given an "Infinite High"
Imagine the most pleasurable drug possible(if you're a recreational drug user,think of your favorite drug)and its high/pleasurable effects last for an eternity. I don't think its actually possible to get bored of such a sensation. :twisted:

Still,just like how an eternity of torture and pain would eventually obliterate your mind/ego,an infinite sensation of maximum pleasure would probably result in the same thing.

Though one results in you probably becoming a mad hollow,the other results in you just laying limp on the ground savoring the mindless pleasure. at least,that's what I can theorize. hehe :lol:

I wonder what would be better,oblivion or eternal mindless pleasure? I'd certainly like to hear your opinions. :geek:

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Summerlander
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby Summerlander » 08 Jan 2018 14:33

We should remind ourselves of the dangers posed by organised religion and how, when it comes to political Islam, we should not cower under the veil of multiculturalism and bury our heads in the abject, dirty creed that religion is beyond criticism and the tenets of any faith must be respected.

I think Freud was right in the respect that people tend to believe in the beyond because they fear death. This reality---according to many who don't know enough about it and feel it's not enough---can't be all there is. I suspect this ubiquitous way of thinking comes from humankind's infancy, when fear of the unknown was most prominent and we needed consoling narratives even if these were false and unfounded. We struggled to make sense of the hostile world around us (volcanos, earthquakes, animal predators, disease)--a terrifying reality that we gradually woke up to as human consciousness gradually emerged--and any 'explanation' would do ... any label.

One of the aftermath symptoms of this trauma--passed on genetically as well as memetically--is superstition, the real source of religion which, later, would be used to corrupt and subdue much of mankind. Religiosity could be viewed as a psychological disease which promotes misology and impairs reasoning; so perhaps the world needs more subtle or clandestine therapists like Peter Boghossian to steer them towards reason, leading the pious to open themselves to physicalism and atheism, which, sorry to break it to those good people who love the lord, is the only reasonable position to hold.

Perhaps even the secular are partial to the aforementioned trauma. I come from a Catholic background but something happened when I was a child which made me question my inherited belief. It made me go from questioning God's motives to agnosticism, and later, as my inquisitive mind demanded that I search for substantial answers (when science began to resonate with me), atheism.

I remember questioning God's motives as a child, His silence, and specifically His absence when He should have acted. I was enrolled in a school run by strict nuns and witnessed two of them tell a young boy his parents must make arrangements for his baptism or he would go to hell. Subsequently they left the boy to his pensive sadness and, eventually, the taunting clamour from other children that he'd burn in hell triggered a lachrymose episode which had a profound impact on me as I observed the scene.

I remember wondering why the other kids didn't seem to experience the empathy I felt for someone in that terrible predicament. I imagined myself having been denied access to heaven as things currently stood--rejected by the 'good side'. Then I wondered why God had not intervened. Even as a child myself I could see that it wasn't the boy's fault. Surely the perfectly good and all-knowing God could see this and make an exception?

As I grew older, doubt began to kick in, especially when I heard some adults expressing their disbelief in God, which used to upset my church-going mother. 'Adults are not sure about God's existence?' I thought. And it began to dawn on me that they had a point that seemed to make sense given God's silence. (Of course, my mother used to tell me that God stopped talking to people like in Biblical times because, despite caring about us, He was deeply dismayed with mankind.) I suppose I stumbled upon a better epistemology and philosophising on the matter further begged questions such as why God would create us sinful and then censure us in order to fulfil His brand of 'justice'.

I don't recall an 'Aha!' moment when I suddenly realised that there is no God. (But I have noticed that I am happier now with the fact that I no longer believe there is a Big Boss watching me 24/7 and feel free to be curious about the world and search for rational explanations without somebody ruining it by saying, 'God made it!')

Some people remember a precise moment when they became atheists--or perhaps a realisation that one is really an atheist if one is going to be honest with oneself! Such is the case of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, an author from Somalia who escaped the murderous clutches of Islam having committed apostasy. In an essay she wrote for The Portable Atheist by Christopher Hitchens, she describes the moment which is akin to the emergence of lucidity in a dream:

'I was an atheist. An apostate. An infidel. I looked in a mirror and said out loud, in Somali, "I don't believe in God." I felt relief. There was no pain but a real clarity. The long process of seeing the flaws in my belief structure, and carefully tip-toeing around the frayed edges as parts of it were torn out piece by piece--all that was over. The ever-present prospect of Hellfire lifted, and my horizon seemed broader. God, Satan, angels: these were all figments of human imagination, mechanisms to impose the will of the powerful on the weak. From now on I could step firmly on the ground that was under my feet and navigate based on my own reason and self-respect. My moral compass was within myself, not in the pages of a sacred book.'
"Empty cognizance of one taste, suffused with knowing, is your unmistaken nature, the uncontrived original state. when not altering what is, allow it to be as it is, and the awakened state is right now spontaneously present."

- Padmasambhava

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RedKryptonite
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Re: Lucid Dreaming and Religion

Postby RedKryptonite » 08 Jan 2018 18:29

Summerlander wrote:Perhaps even the secular are partial to the aforementioned trauma. I come from a Catholic background but something happened when I was a child which made me question my inherited belief. It made me go from questioning God's motives to agnosticism, and later, as my inquisitive mind demanded that I search for substantial answers (when science began to resonate with me), atheism.

I remember questioning God's motives as a child, His silence, and specifically His absence when He should have acted. I was enrolled in a school run by strict nuns and witnessed two of them tell a young boy his parents must make arrangements for his baptism or he would go to hell. Subsequently they left the boy to his pensive sadness and, eventually, the taunting clamour from other children that he'd burn in hell triggered a lachrymose episode which had a profound impact on me as I observed the scene.

I remember wondering why the other kids didn't seem to experience the empathy I felt for someone in that terrible predicament. I imagined myself having been denied access to heaven as things currently stood--rejected by the 'good side'. Then I wondered why God had not intervened. Even as a child myself I could see that it wasn't the boy's fault. Surely the perfectly good and all-knowing God could see this and make an exception?

As I grew older, doubt began to kick in, especially when I heard some adults expressing their disbelief in God, which used to upset my church-going mother. 'Adults are not sure about God's existence?' I thought. And it began to dawn on me that they had a point that seemed to make sense given God's silence. (Of course, my mother used to tell me that God stopped talking to people like in Biblical times because, despite caring about us, He was deeply dismayed with mankind.) I suppose I stumbled upon a better epistemology and philosophising on the matter further begged questions such as why God would create us sinful and then censure us in order to fulfil His brand of 'justice'.

I don't recall an 'Aha!' moment when I suddenly realised that there is no God. (But I have noticed that I am happier now with the fact that I no longer believe there is a Big Boss watching me 24/7 and feel free to be curious about the world and search for rational explanations without somebody ruining it by saying, 'God made it!')

Some people remember a precise moment when they became atheists--or perhaps a realisation that one is really an atheist if one is going to be honest with oneself! Such is the case of Ayaan Hirsi Ali, an author from Somalia who escaped the murderous clutches of Islam having committed apostasy. In an essay she wrote for The Portable Atheist by Christopher Hitchens, she describes the moment which is akin to the emergence of lucidity in a dream:

'I was an atheist. An apostate. An infidel. I looked in a mirror and said out loud, in Somali, "I don't believe in God." I felt relief. There was no pain but a real clarity. The long process of seeing the flaws in my belief structure, and carefully tip-toeing around the frayed edges as parts of it were torn out piece by piece--all that was over. The ever-present prospect of Hellfire lifted, and my horizon seemed broader. God, Satan, angels: these were all figments of human imagination, mechanisms to impose the will of the powerful on the weak. From now on I could step firmly on the ground that was under my feet and navigate based on my own reason and self-respect. My moral compass was within myself, not in the pages of a sacred book.'

I've put this off for too long,but I may as well discuss my journey to Atheism as well.

I am an Ex-Catholic/Christian. What started me on the path to questioning my religion is my traumatic childhood experience with bullies. I was never what you'd call a "normal kid." I was socially awkward,fat,mentally unstable,introverted and a total computer/video game geek. I was big and strong enough to defend myself,but I was always taught by my teachers and religious authorities that violence was always wrong no matter what,and because of that,I refused to fight back. Believe it or not,I actually used to be a very good follower of our religion. I didn't just believe because of the comfortable mumbo jumbo,I actually followed it and tried not to sin as best as I can. Needless to say,this made me a very attractive target for bullies. I remember every night I would pray and beg God/Jesus to save me from my tormentors. I was literally crying and begging him to save me every night. I restrained myself from violent retaliation because I genuinely believed that it was wrong and that asking God for help is the right thing...but that help never came. :(
If only I knew back then what I know now,I would have smashed the first bully who came at me. Politically correct society refuses to accept this,but harsh life experience has taught me that there are only really 2 effective ways to prevent/stop bullying:
1) Not being interesting enough to be targeted in the first place or
2) Being too expensive to victimize
http://chirontraining.blogspot.com/2012/12/bullying-as-human-behavior.html

Unfortunately,I was unlucky in both genetics(uncontrollable strange mannerisms)and environment/upbringing(my parents were too poor and ignorant to put me in a specialized institution at the time.) and so the only available option to me is #2. however,as I've said before,the whole "violence is never the answer" bullshit was ingrained into me by religion and the school.

One day,I snapped however. to tell you the truth,I cannot remember most of my childhood(probably a good thing. they say your mind will sometimes block out memories that are too traumatic to protect the person) including the first few fights I got into in school. I do however,remember deeply wounding a classmate with my long nails. I also started being really aggressive and ready to go at it,I would often yell/scream at whoever tries to bully me. I stopped praying entirely and acted rebelliously towards our religion. "if God refuses to help me,he can go fuck himself! I'm gonna sin and beat the hell out of anyone who tries to mess with me!"

In addition to this,I started participating in heated religious debates on youtube and sided with Atheists. I actually didn't really believe the Atheists at first and was only doing it to release my pent up rage and give God the finger. Oh man,I really pounded on a ton of blindly religious people there. Felt great,I have no idea if I've actually successfully converted anyone there(if they did,they never came back to admit it. they just went silent)but it doesn't matter,it was an awesome way to release steam. :twisted:

Eventually however...I started calming down,and slowly but surely I became convinced of all the logical arguments by the Atheists and their dissection of the bible's inconsistencies. Before I knew it,I wasn't "angry at God" anymore,I instead fully and truly didn't believe in it anymore. being angry at God is about as silly as being angry at Santa Claus for not giving me my presents during x-mas :lol:

I do however,remember 1 specific event that once and for all shattered any remaining faith I had in that religion. It was the concept of the lord's supposed "omniscience" and hell. If this God was really omniscient(knows everything including all future events)then he knows from the day you're born...nay,long before any of us even came into existence,where our future will end up. In essence,those who were destined for hell were already doomed to begin with. wow,some "all-loving father" we have here. :roll:

That realization pretty much shattered any remaining belief I had in Christianity,and pushed me into Deism. The reason I became a Deist back then rather than become a full-blown Atheist is because it was my only answer to the secret of the universe and for the sometimes "seemingly supernatural" things that happen around us. I was under the impression that a powerful being indeed created the universe,but then decides not to interact with us except for the occasional supernatural/inexplicable moments.

My first Atheist friend was on youtube. a guy by the name of "THEREIZNOGOD." He's not on youtube anymore and we've both gone our separate ways,but thankfully his account is still up and here are 2 of his short but classic videos:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31ElTOh9Eec
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UEJiX4j4a5g

Goddamn youtube,if only they didn't delete the old PM box. we had such great conversations. Back then,I was just a naive little kid and I presented my Deism to him. I remember him telling me that the problem with this belief is it is based on the idea that there has to be something more than we can see,but the problem is that if we can't see/know something,we can't talk about it either. we can't just go jumping to imaginary conclusions because it makes us comfortable. We have to be comfortable with accepting that there are things about life we simply don't know yet,and we may very well never truly know until our death.

While I definitely understood his argument,I didn't take it to heart until much later on. I eventually went from Deist to Atheist. I cannot reveal this publicly because I live in a religious neighborhood but my parents and sister are very much aware. Thankfully the internet is here to freely discuss this matter without fear of social backlash.

I doubt there is an afterlife or an intelligent ultimate being who created us all...but if there is,its very much doubtful that any of the man-made religions are correct. Deism I would say is much more likely than any organized religion.

There you go,that's my story. I went from actively hating Christianity,to completely disbelieving in it. I might have more to say,and will probably say it later,but here's what's on my mind for now.


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