What's in store for ThyMindOMan.com? Where have we been, and where are we going? The Gift is being invited into my life and yours, as are some great new offerings.
I voice this podcast episode for Methods Podcast, which introduces the vipassana method of meditation.
We operate from two identities simultaneously during our life, but one of those identities is greater, and is the one that we should strive to know, and be One with.
I suggest that Joseph Smith's earliest direct encounters with God happened in mystical experience, or what is also known as altered states of consciousness.
A friend asked me what my take was on the problem of evil, or theodicy, so I thought I'd write about it here.
I think that Christianity may have conflated Jesus's mystical experience of an ego death, perhaps at the time of his baptism when the "heavens opened," in which his individual psychological self "died" and he was was "reborn" of Spirit, or "raised up" (resurrected) to his identity in Christ consciousness (a consciousness of nondual union in God/Reality), with his biological death on the cross. These two deaths seem to have been conflated at some point, resulting in a supernatural conception of the resurrection.
David Bentley Hart (b. 1965) is described as "an American polymath whose work encompasses a wide range of subjects and genres. A prolific essayist, he has written on topics as diverse as art, literature, religion, philosophy, film, baseball, and politics. He is also a writer of fiction." Religiously speaking, he is a "convert from high-church Anglicanism [...]
What is qualia? What is the source of individual instances of subjective conscious experience, like seeing the redness of an apple? Where does the redness come from? I don't know, but here are some ideas. Energy in our environment impinges upon our sense organs causing a cascade of electrochemical reactions and nerve impulses that are [...]
I wonder if Silas/Silvanus could be Paul's nickname for his own alter ego, the "Saul" of his prior persecuting life, his shadow side, his human side, his "sinful" side, prior to perhaps taking a "new name" of Paul after his conversion experience.
It's taken more time to write about this reconstruction, because it is perhaps a more sensitive subject, and more complex, than any I have written before about Mormonism or Christianity, yes, even more so than Jesus or Joseph Smith (which might be an indication that something is off-kilter). The Salt Lake City based Latter-day Saints take the Book of Mormon very seriously as a holy text, as scripture revealed by God, similar to the Bible, and perhaps even more important than the Bible. The Book of Mormon is one thing that makes them unique, their own testament of the divinity of "Jesus Christ," which they believe is also evidence of the unique prophethood of Joseph Smith and the divinity of the church he organized as God's "true church." But I think the truth may be much more nuanced.