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Default philosophic ‘enlightenment’

February 24th, 2008 · 5 Comments

SK creates a comment thread, good:re: mysticism…. We can leapfrog with a series of topics here. As I said, the mystical path can prove most unpromising, while the historical survey of such can help to get the subject grounded. You express disinterest in Schopenhauer, but he at least points to the sudden perception of spiritual psychology done right, that is free from all the jargon and clicheed misunderstood profundity that leaves people with their head tied in knots.
Here’s the shortest book on the subject. You can browse it standing up in a bookstore. Take a small taste and let it sink in over the years. It wil click some day.
Gurus and New Age writers have turned these questions into a good business of keeping people mystified, and hence dependent. The approach of Schopenhauer gives the game away outright: you can realize what you already have/know, your default philosophic enlightenment which gurus seem to take away from you to control you.
Schopenhauer is, of course, flowing in the vein of German Classical Philosophy, which is a truly stunning labyrinth, so that context may make him seem harder than he is. He tried hard to rescue the subject from obscurity. It is after all the Upanishadic vision made comprehensible in a scientific context. A post here on Schopenhauer

Don’t be conned by mysticism mongers into wilful ignorance in the name of higher truth, blah blah.

Set aside the burn-out ‘enlightenment’ jargon, and take the issue as a practical need to understand basic spiritual psychology in relation to phenomenon/noumenon. Once you sense that ‘self’ can be ambiguous at the boundary of representation, you have have gone through the fast lane past most floundering mystics trying in vein to understand that which they have declared they can’t understand.

Tags: New Age · Philosophy

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 sillykitty // Feb 25, 2008 at 2:35 am

    okay. i bought the book. thank you for picking out the best schopenhauer for dummies. i appreciate the help. i will do my best with it although probably seated.

    i don’t know what sensing that “the ‘self’ can be ambiguous at the boundary of representation” means. so i can’t tell if i have figured it out or not. probably not. but possibly anyone who has endured rape, torture, trauma (everyone?) has had a glimpse of what you mean?

  • 2 nemo // Feb 25, 2008 at 6:40 pm

    You put yourself down too much. The book isn’t from the ‘for dummies’ series. It is merely a short summary.
    The issue of representations is a lot like the ‘veil of Maya’ in Upanishadic lore.

  • 3 sillykitty // Feb 26, 2008 at 12:36 am

    how does the ‘veil of maya’ treatment of representations compare with the postmodern treatment of representations? i have always imagined a link between what postmodernists are trying to do and zen satori. ???

  • 4 nemo // Feb 26, 2008 at 7:28 pm

    I don’t know the connection. I wouldn’t get Schopenhauer confused with postmodernism.

  • 5 The Gurdjieff Con » Default philosophic ‘enlightenment’ // Sep 9, 2008 at 5:03 pm

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