Finding ones herd....

Who was Joseph Campbell? What is a myth? What does "Follow Your Bliss" mean? If you are new to the work of Joseph Campbell, this forum is a good place to start.

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MotherLodeBeth
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Post by MotherLodeBeth » Fri Feb 23, 2007 3:22 am

What about those who are loners or who have no desire to belong to a herd? I ask because over the years I have enjoyed learning about all religions and even exploring the faith of my ancestors.

But I have to admit that belief systems especially religious ones demand one believe in certain things and I have yet to find one that is consistent and doesn't lack major discrepancies.

MotherLodeBeth

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Post by Raptured » Fri Feb 23, 2007 3:22 am

Thats because you are starting to move past the dualities that religions structure. Its either one belief or another. But when we move through the crushing rocks of dualites, we find it... That personal rapture, the feeling of being alive. I don't really think its about one or the other. Or as Joe said himself, when we move through the dualities, we have the metaphysical realization that you and the other are one (and I use the trem other in a very loose sense).

john
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Post by SkiaOura » Fri Feb 23, 2007 3:22 am


I recently realized something:
In the Patanjali translation that I have, the author points out that there are different sammadhis, or unified consciousnesses. You achieve the first by focusing on one object until your consciousness and that object are one, and then you withdraw that object, leaving your mind blank since the consciousness goes with the object. At this point, you focus on something on a different plane, and repeat the process 7 more times.
Anyway, the author points out that already at the lower levels, in the transition from one plane to another, ultimate reality seeps through when consciousness is momentarily lost.

This brought me to evaluate my experiences slightly differently. In my life, transitions between beliefs or lessons can be very drastic, and for a little while, when the old belief is gone but the new one not yet formed, I do feel more bliss, than ever otherwise. This brings me to think that in order to reach the ultimate all beliefs must be abandoned completely.

So, in reply to the original post, I think that you should seek not groups whose beliefs agree with you (since they will necessarily change) but whose practices you respect and whose symbols resonate with you.
But, of course, it depends on what your goal is. =)

Thanks,

Skia Oura.
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Post by MotherLodeBeth » Fri Feb 23, 2007 3:22 am

I am reminded of Professor Huston Smith from U C Berkeley, who has written some good book son religions whom I remember reading, has taken the positive from various religions and embraced those and discarded the negative. I like that idea.

The issue for me is when I have tried to be just one thing, I feel like a caged animal. When I allow myself to be open and interested in all things, I breathe easier, and my health is excellent.

Interestingly, this applies to my entire life. From diet to sleep patterns to daily activity. If I am to structured I become sick and depressed. If I listen to my body and mind and give them what they need day to day I am fine.

Beth
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Post by Monoimus » Fri Feb 23, 2007 3:22 am

"People should not worry as much about what they do but rather about what they are. If they and their ways are good, then their deeds are radiant. If you are righteous, then what you do will also be righteous. We should not think that holiness is based on what we do but rather on what we are, for it is not our works which sanctify us but we who sanctify our works. "

Meister Eckhart

I thought that was a good quote.

You don't need a "herd" in order to progress spiritually or find God or whatever your goal is. If it is true what the book of Luke says "the kingdom of God is within you" and to make another play on word ...if "the body is the temple" then who needs a church? You need look no futher then yourself.

In fact if you look throughout history it is the "Mystic" or person who pulls his self away from the "herd", and forsakes humanity, that eventually returns to save that which he has forsaken in the name of God.

Hope htis helps,
Ben


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Post by markmc03 » Fri Feb 23, 2007 3:22 am

Though this thread has long gone cold, I could resist adding a comment.

Exclusivist religions require you to disavow all others. I understand this, but I also find it smacks false to me. It feels wrong.

It's like the old joke about the person who went to heaven and while getting the grand tour before settling in was asked by St. Peter to keep quiet while visiting the different rooms in Heaven. When asked why? St Peter replies that its necessary because the inhabitants of each room think they are the only ones there.

I like the way Joseph Campbell boiled down the various religions (mythologies) to their metaphorical essence. I don't think it is necessary to adhere to the tenets of one religion over another. You take what speaks to you.

I believe the same is true of all knowledge. There really is too much to choose from. So I try to pare it down to I need to make sense of the world and my place in it.

I find that people get scared when you talk about such things so casually. I have a brother, for instance, who holds tightly to the belief that there is a heaven and a hell. He is a strong proponent of Capital Punishment, bemoans the fact that Canada does not have the Death Penalty, and practically drools over the thought that someone executed will spend an eternity in pain and agony.

I pity him, for he lives his life in fear. He doesn't seem to understand the necessity for compassion and the need to care more about how we relate to the world. He has never been assaulted. No one he knows has ever been murdered. But he lives fearful that he, or his wife, or one of his daughters might be set upon by some 'other'.

Attending to our own requirements, to knowing what we require to follow our bliss, whatever level we may be operating on, should be the primary concern.

I don't think we need a herd to do that, but it helps sometimes to have company. Loneliness is one of the greatest challenges on the trail.
Mark - <br><br>"To make an apple pie from scratch, first you must create the universe."<br>-Carl Sagan
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