Leo's Blog: Infinite Insights — Page 67
Scientists have recently discovered a 1000 year old shaman pouch in the Andes mountains containing various hallucinogenic plants and snorting utensils.
The real question is, why doesn't everyone have such a pouch 1000 years later?
Where is your shaman pouch?
"While scientists were performing astounding feats of disciplined reason [during the Enlightenment], breaking down the barriers of the 'unknowable' in every field of knowledge, charting the course of light rays in space or the course of blood in the capillaries of man’s body — what philosophy was offering them, as interpretation of and guidance for their achievements was the plain Witchdoctory of Hegel, who proclaimed that matter does not exist at all, that everything is Idea (not somebody’s idea, just Idea), and that this Idea operates by the dialectical process of a new 'super-logic' which proves that contradictions are the law of reality, that A is non-A, and that omniscience about the physical universe (including electricity, gravitation, the solar system, etc.) is to be derived, not from the observation of facts, but from the contemplation of that Idea’s triple somersaults inside his, Hegel’s, mind. This was offered as a philosophy of reason."
-- Ayn Rand
And she was precisely wrong!
It takes skill and effort to be this wrong. The skill of a devil.
Stage Orange materialism/rationalism underestimates idealism/mysticism by assuming it to be philosophical mental-masturbation with no real-world consequences, when of course the truth is that materialism/rationalism is itself thoroughly deluded because it fails to take into account higher states of consciousness, which, if achieved, will erase the illusion of a material or rational world altogether.
Here Ayn Rand demonstrates the pre/trans fallacy: confusing Hegel's trans-rational explanations of the Absolute with pre-rational myth, fundamentalist religion, and soft thinking. In truth, Ayn Rand's dualistic logic was closer to myth than Hegel's.
The great irony is that materialism and rationalism turn out to be Witchdoctory — the very thing they accused philosophy and religion of being! Such is the counter-intuitive nature of the mind. To a devil like Ayn Rand, black is white, up is down, light is dark, and Absolute Truth is fiction. I've noticed that people who make vehement appeal to "reason" (like Ayn Rand or Sam Harris) turn out to be some of the greatest devils because they assume that reason is somehow a guarantor of truth, when in fact reason does the bidding of the ego. You cannot get to Absolute Truth through reason. Which totally shocks stage Orange rationalists, because they always held in blind faith that you could. A rationalist is just someone who replaces fundamentalist religious faith in the inerrancy of The Bible or Koran with a fundamentalist faith in the inerrancy of reason.
Hegel was a spiritual genius. He was the Western/German version of Nagarjuna or The Buddha. But his words fell on deaf ears and got confined to history books or philosophy lectures.
Interestingly, when you start to research Western intellectual tradition you find a strong thread of idealism running all throughout which few Westerners today know about or take seriously. This gives a false impression that the West has always been materialist and anti-mystical, and that science has always been a materialist enterprise. Not true. This is an artificial narrative constructed by materialists to relieve themselves of the responsibility of taking idealist notions seriously. Many of the West's greatest scientists, thinkers, and visionaires were idealists, and for good reason. Because the more intelligent you become, the more idealism becomes unavoidable. Realist scientists and thinkers are 2nd rate intellects. They are good at technical analysis but they lack the holistic visionary aspect of the intellect, which is the most important aspect.
The intellect has two functions: analysis and synthesis, or division and unification. The intellect can be used to carve up reality or stitch it together. Modern academic and Western intellectual culture is overly biased towards analysis at the expense of synthesis, vision-logic, unification, and big picture thinking. Our schools teach kids how to carve up reality but not how to stitch it together. As a result our science and our society is overly-autistic and disconnected from our humanity and our divinity. Modern science lacks heart and vision. Which doesn't mean that science is bad or all-wrong, it just means that modern science is highly partial, and that there is a higher version of science yet to be actualized. Science and reason are not to be abandoned but expanded.
Here's Orange/Green reacting against stage Blue.
Notice that Orange/Green simply cannot understand the stage Blue worldview because it's biased by an unquestioned certainty in the materialist paradigm. What stage Orange/Green does not understand is that there is no such thing as objective reality, "facts", "truth", or "sanity".
Stage Blue vs Orange/Green are literally inhabiting different realities which their minds are constructing. But since they do not understand that their mind constructs reality, they assume that their reality is the one "true" reality while the other side is literally insane. This notion of insanity plays a pivotal function in their worldview because they need some way of explaining away the otherwise without actually investigating it. By calling the other side "insane" it automatically absolves you from having to seriously question your notion of "real".
What needs to be realized is that however you think reality is, you're making that up! "No Leo, I'm not making it up. You're crazy!" << You just made that up! Lol. See? Your metaphysical assumptions become your reality, no matter how crazy, unreasonable, or false they are. So if you believe there is an objective external reality, that becomes your reality. But it is not true in any absolute sense. Your mind is making reality up as you go along. Including, of course, the denial that you do so.
There actually is no firm boundary between a crazy worldview and a reasonable one. That duality collapses upon deep examination.
Without deeply understanding this you will never understand what reality is, how it works, or why humans behave as they do. For you there will always be stuff that happens in the world which seems totally batshit crazy. But it only appears that way from your POV because your worldview is inadequate at accounting for other worldviews. As a rule of thumb, any time you see something crazy happening in the world, that's a clue that you don't understand it deeply enough. The mind uses the judgment "that's crazy" as a cop-out.
With all that said, some people are exceptionally deluded.
"The path into the light seems dark,
the path forward seems to go back,
the direct path seems long,
true power seems weak,
true purity seems tarnished,
true steadfastness seems changeable,
true clarity seems obscure,
the greatest art seems unsophisticated,
the greatest love seems indifferent,
the greatest wisdom seems childish.
The Tao is nowhere to be found.
Yet it nourishes and completes all things."
-- Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching
Folks have been asking me to release a photo of when I used to be fat. Some even accused me of making up the story that I used to be fat. Well, I was in fact fat from about age 9 to age 21.
I didn't have fat photos of myself because: 1) Back then there were no cell phones or selfie pics, 2) I didn't like taking photos of myself when I was fat.
But anyhow, I finally found an old photo at my Mom's house. So here you go:
235 lbs at 6'2". 20 years old. About one year after this photo was taken I lost 65 pounds in 5 months, dropping to 170 lbs. I've kept it off ever since. Right now I'm at 180 lbs.
This was accomplished through diet changes & lots of gym exercise, including cardio and weights. I worked out 5 days a week for about 10 years. For the past 2 years I have not worked out at all and still keep the weight off because my diet is about 10x cleaner than it used to be, such that exercise for purposes of weight-maintenance is unnecessary. But exercise is still good for health of course.
Big change is possible if you set your mind on it. The most important aspects of accomplishing a change like this are: 1) vision, 2) discipline, and 3) focus.
Because my videos are so abstract and metaphysical sometimes people overlook the meat of this work. Personal development is very practical stuff with very tangible results. Don't let the abstract explanations fool you. You must also be results-oriented. Get shit done by whatever means necessary. Claw your way up Maslow's Hierarchy. If you're new to personal development you need to dial in the basics like health, diet, career, finances, living environment, family situation, dating, etc. Don't get so metaphysical that you neglect all that. You will find awakening impossible if you can't even stop eating junk food or can't earn enough to pay your rent.
Here's a perfect little example of dualistic thinking:
This kind of thinking is extremely common at Spiral Dynamics Stage Blue. But watch out! — dualistic thinking is still present in spades at higher stages. It's not just rednecks who think in this black-and-white way. You do it every day! Don't fool yourself into thinking you're above dualistic thinking. Dualistic thinking can be very subtle and it affects even the most rational and scientific thinkers. Rationality and science are chock full of dualities.
There's more to reality than the simplistic categories your mind creates.
Here's a really intelligent and self-aware perspective on ecology & environment. It's a stage Yellow perspective. Notice the nuance and complexity of it. It balances science, business, art, and compassion, transcending AND including stages Orange and Green. Notice the lack of blaming problems on someone else. Notice the attitude of meeting people where they're at. Notice how science & spirituality/religion are not pitted against each other. It's a cooperation of left and right brain, mind & heart. Notice the systems thinking.
Love it! Try to adopt this kind of attitude in your life.
Here's a great role-model for those of you looking to actualize your life purpose:
He's really nailed his purpose.
Notice how unique and personal one's life purpose becomes when you start to fully actualize it.
Find more such role-models within your domain of mastery.
Take my Life Purpose Course for a step-by-step guide for finding your life purpose.
Classically, the 4 elements were Air, Water, Fire, and Earth. The 5th element — which few people know about — was called the quintessence (literally, "the 5th essence") or Aether — otherwise known as Nothingness or Emptiness or Void.
In science, Aether was known as luminiferous ether, the medium through which light and gravity waves were supposed to have propagated. In the early 20th century physicists like Einstein and others "debunked" the notion of ether by reasoning that light waves did not need a medium to propagate through. They ran various experiments trying to measure the existence of ether but nothing turned up, so they discarded the notion as superfluous. Except Aether is not superfluous, it is central! What the scientists did not understand, and still do not understand, is that Aether wasn't a measurable medium like water, air, or even space — it is Nothing! This is not the same as saying that Aether does not exist. Aether exists as Nothing, the Groundless Ground, or pure Existence itself — existence devoid of any content. Don't bother trying to measure it because you can't. Existence is prior to measurement. The medium for the propagation of light waves and gravity waves (and anything else for that matter) is consciousness. And also don't confuse Aether/Nothingness with the vacuum of space. Aether is prior to space or time. It "holds" space and time.
What people don't understand is that quintessence is not just Nothingness, it is not just Existence, it is also Consciousness, Truth, God, Love, Goodness, Intelligence, Self, Other, and World!
But how can Love be Nothingness? How could it not! Only Nothingness has the capacity to embrace all. Only Nothingness is selfless enough to embrace all. Only no-thing can unconditionally accept every-thing. The embrace is so complete that Nothingness literally IS everything! This is pure, Platonic Love. Not just love as an emotion (although it is that too), but love as Being itself. Love is the union of all opposites into one seamless totality. Love is the unification of all divisions. Love is the super-set of all sub-sets. Love is universality. Love is infinity. Love is unlimited.
The 5th Element got their metaphysics exactly right:
After all is said and done, in the final analysis, the force that saves the world is none other than the force that makes the world: Love.
You ARE quintessence. You ARE Love.
Your ability to unify all opposites, all dualities, is the measure of your love. It is Unity as an Absolute. A Unity so all-embracing it has no opposite. A nonduality so nondual it doesn't know duality. A Love so complete it does not know judgment, criticism, rejection, hatred, selfishness, or evil. Yet at the same time it embraces them all by being them all. Human love is a tiny branch off the tree of universal Love. This tree is infinite, with countless branches of varying size. You are one branch AND you are the entire tree. To actualize one branch is to be human. To actualize the entire tree is to be God. Each branch is not other than the tree, such that all there is, is tree. What it means to be a tree is to be each branch and the sum total of them all at once. To realize this totality is Truth and Love.
Notice, when you feel an emotion of deep love, what you're feeling is not an egoic desire but a selflessness and a deep unity with the universe. In that moment you are being selfless, and it feels right and good. It feels divine.
So how do you conquer evil? By experiencing yourself as Love. Just like in the clip above. It sounds childish, until you try to do it and you quickly see just how hard it is for your ego to do. It is the mark of a masterful sage to be able to embrace all. You can't do it because you have too much evil in you. All-encompassing Love threatens you like light threatens a shadow. You can't do it because you are too busy defending your self while Love is self-less-ness. Love is also fearlessness. If there is no self, there is nothing to lose, and nothing to fear.
"A coward is incapable of exhibiting love; it is the prerogative of the brave."
— Mahatma Gandhi
Terminator 2 is — in my opinion — one of the greatest films of all time.
Ever since I was a kid the final scene always moved me:
It's such a brilliant final scene, filled with spiritual significance.
Now I understand why I liked it so much. It represents the hardest things for an ego to do: self-terminate. It represents the stark brutality of total selflessness.
How do you ask a self to self-terminate?
You see? That is why this work is hard.
"Be melting snow. Wash yourself of yourself." — Rumi
WARNING: Do not confuse self-termination with suicide. I am talking about spiritual self-termination. Suicide is just more ego.