by Jonathan Drake 53 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • OnTheWayOut

    Sounds like the perfect beach book for me. I ordered it and will read it this winter on vacation.

    Without previewing the book, it sounds much like a western version of eastern Zen/Tao philosophy. Let go, less is more, be at harmony and peace with your surroundings. There are terms for that without the word "spiritual." It is called "inner peace" and "serenity." One can be "enlightened" when they realize what it takes to get this feeling.

    You don't have to be religious to benefit from eastern philosophy. But I tend to agree with others that your "spirituality" is not an achieved "oneness" with the universe, but rather a journey down a path that your own mind wants to go, so different for each person and their focuses.

    I like to say that "spiritual" is everything that is not secular. "Secular" is labor and paying for things. But "spiritual" is enjoying life and other people, and includes escaping from daily routines in any way. It can include work and paying the bills when you reflect on what those things do for your character.

  • Xanthippe

    You see it's hopeless to talk about spirituality JD. If we said falling in love is not real it's just hormones and you are thinking with your gonads they would be happier. If we said you don't love your children you are just following you mammalian and primate instincts which is really your selfish genes trying to survive, that would do nicely. By the way I wasn't commenting on OTWO, we posted at exactly the same time.

  • DJS


    Yeah I know, I'm in the minority. Seriously, if evidence of said spirit or spirits is ever presented that can be verified I will believe. I'm not a religious atheist. Until then, my rational brain and the science I've read up to this point suggests it is nothing more than a self induced emotional state.


    As for my GF's ass, scientifically speaking she has the perfect waist to hip ratio (0.7). That is the ratio that evolutionary biologists say is the one that brings out the neanderthal in men, including me. It makes me wanna get my club and drag her into my cave or onto the hood of my BMW. It's not my fault; it's Grog's. I was just drawn that way.

    Second, she has a very toned body with no extraneous body fat. And a thigh gap (gasp). Her skin is bronze, smooth and flawless (she ain't from around here). Her frequent work-outs include weight lighting - squats, etc., which keeps the toned very toned.

    As for photos, Simon and my GF would kill me.

  • Oubliette

    DJS: Seriously, if evidence of said spirt [sic] or spirits is ever presented that can be verified I will believe.

    I appreciate the gist of your comment and in most other contexts would completely agree, but itis not really relevant to this thread because Sam Harris explicitly does NOT use the word "spirituality" with this meaning.

    Please see my comments regarding this on page 1 of this thread.



  • DJS

    Thanks Oublittle,

    I've re-read your post and tried to understand what Mr. Harris is trying to say. His definition of spiritual is his definition of spiritual. You can also find it in various dictionaries, almost all of which use words such as non-material, supernatural, soul, having the nature of a spirit. My point, which I believe is relevant to the overall topic and OP, is that spirit/spiritual/spirituality are primarily associated with the unseen god-like forces common in religion.

    If Harris or anyone else wishes to use the term(s) to relate to a lifestyle or a manner of thinking/feeling, for example, I'm ok with that. I sometimes use the word karma to describe those getting exactly what they deserve, but I don't mean that karma has any god qualities to it.

  • azor

    DJS - what I have read and heard from Harris is his way of addressing spiritual as you use the word Karma. He is starting a conversation with this book on the subject. Perhaps 100 years from now we will refer to this as a neo-virtual experience or some other term that provide specific physical knowledge about the areas of the brain that are being affected and how it is helpful or harmful.

    If we don't talk about this and chalk it up as just woo how do we grow in our understanding. How will we learn and help humanity break free from the ridiculous superstitions that have burdened us for millennia?

  • Brokeback Watchtower
    Brokeback Watchtower

    I think it is important to acknowledge man's spiritual side and not take a extreme materialistic approach to man's psychological condition.

    The worship of Deities is part of our psychological make up for 100s of thousands of years and maybe more as his mind entered the ages of reason and intellectual ability it is therefore embedded deep in our unconscious drives and should not be ignored or else it can cause unpleasant results.

    I'm all for new forms of spirituality that will satisfy man's needs to be more whole and in touch with himself and sometimes just taking the time to go inward by sitting quietly has tremendous reward as it allows for more connection and awareness.

  • Jonathan Drake
    Jonathan Drake


    You see it's hopeless to talk about spirituality JD. If we said falling in love is not real it's just hormones and you are thinking with your gonads they would be happier.

    I don't think it's necessarily pointless. If a person were to feel the way you describe isn't necessarily wrong per se. We could never disagree with them if we are honest. Further I would say personal experience is what matters most with this subject.

    Everyone who has participated in this thread is engaged and has either read the book or plans to, mostly. I very excitedly look forward to their opinions because they are intelligent human beings. so if this experience can be read about and had by them on any level, or if the book makes honestly good points (and not just ones I may be biased toward) then I am going to found out.

  • Oubliette

    DJS, thanks for reading and re-reading my initial post. Of course, this is MY take on what Sam Harris has to say on the subject. If you really want to know what he has to say you should read his book yourself.

    He most certainly is not referring to any belief system that involves any deity, certainly not like those described by the Abrahamic religions.

    BTW, it's Oubliette, not Oublittle. Spelling counts!

  • Brokeback Watchtower
    Brokeback Watchtower

    I think some might be intrested in Jung's work about man and symbols:


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