Thursday, August 14, 2008

Some Realizations about Life

1. I believe that there are many ways to relate to G-d and that any group/or person who claims that 'mine/ours is the only path' is guilty of a narrowest and possibly deceptive outlook.
2. It is important to evaluate progress towards one's life goals to ensure that the correct focus is maintained. Don't be afraid to be self critical (although not to excess) for its through personal self-analysis that we grow.
3. G-d's creation is revealed with science. There is also nothing in theistic belief that makes it mutually exclusive from science (despite the best efforts of biblical literalists and scientific materialists). I am an integrationist in this sense.
4. It is important to have faith in G-d who endowed us with reason as a tool to make sense of the universe. Reason and logic can solve many a problem.
5. Keep an open mind although there is nothing wrong with a healthy dose of scepticism.
6. Be weary of groups/organizations that are centered around the thoughts and actions of one person. They too often have a tendency to take on Cult-like characteristics.
7. Take with a grain of salt anyone who describes themselves as the ' foremost expert in...' . Real 'experts' need not use such hyperbole.
8. I see the matter world as the condensation of the spirit counterpart. The two are the same and are defined by the 'milieu of the existence framework'. This is not the same as the strict dualism of mind/body but may be related (I am working in this) with principles of complementary superposition (such as the quantum particle/wave divide).
9. There is a design to the universe but this transcends the simplistic as envisioned by the Intelligent Design Movement. This higher design incorporates the notion of chance - so apparent randomness is an illusion.
10. Evolution is consistent with belief in G-d, so is natural selection. It is not necessary to envision a low level designer as championed by the ID movement. The direction from G-d can very easily be defined by a mechanism that appears 'random' to us. Also keep in mind that scientific empiricism and rationalism are ultimately limited at the extremes of the material periprhery.
11. A person should aim for the highest level of pleasure - the spiritual. Aspiring to such pleasure involves many routes - for some its prayer, for others its good deeds, for many its both. I elevate myself to the spiritual by helping others as a teacher, acting with a goodness and communicating to G-d.
12. It is important to better oneself. Improving my skills as a teacher, expanding my knowledge in various subjects and a constant litany of self correction techniques are paramount to my life.
13. One should not be afraid to think and allow one's mind to wander. Society often frowns on the latter - which is unfortunate as 'Mind Wandering' is a great mechanism for the initiation of useful thought.
14. Acknowledge one's weaknesses - work to improve these shortfalls - but don't let it dominate your lives. Imperfection is not necessarily a 'bad' phenomenon.
15. Exercise Free Will with informed thought.
16. A dialectic approach can further cultivate our understanding of the universe - it is vital to synthesize contrasting points of view- but this need not be a symmetrical synthesis. Critical thinking and logic must be used to reject aspects of the inferior position (whether it be thesis or antithesis).
17. Most problems have multiple solutions.
18. The worst output of any one of our passions is indifference to mediocrity.
19. No Book has all the answers.
20. Live by your own standards not others.
21. There is nothing wrong with pleasure but there are different levels of pleasure.
22. The universe is dynamic - adjust with purposeful thought.
23. Do not confuse Relativism with Dynamics - the former attaches itself to nothing which leaves itself further adrift and lost in a continual sea of change.
24. People have a natural tendency to gravitate towards the lowest level of pleasure, the physical. It is impossible to renounce the physical (doing so is a meaningless exercise - asceticism - a failed philosophy) what is achievable is to manage the physical keeping it in perspective - with a lower priority to that of the intellectual and spiritual.
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