Jan F. Brouwer's writings on spirituality

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by JanFBrouwer, Sep 8, 2012.

  1. JanFBrouwer
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    Note to the admin. This thread contains posts from the writer Jan F. Brouwer. All my posts are contained in this thread with the intent not to overcrowd the board with new threads.

    The topics of this thread are diverse, but mainly concerned with religion, philosophy, science and spirituality.
     
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  2. JanFBrouwer
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    We men have a deep longing for women. This longing is of course sexual and biological. But would it be merely sexual, we would behave like the city pigeons I see mating below my window: we would climb on top of the female, do It, and then fly away as fast as we can.

    No, there is something more that attracts us to the female, something more than the image of our mother we see reflected in her. And this 'something more' is of a spiritual kind. In the female we are confronted with the great Unknown, the Mystery of life. We do not understand her. There is a quality of 'being' in a woman that escapes and eludes us. This quality explains our fascination with her.

    The more we hate religion and spirituality, the more we are attracted to women. We turn on our computer, visit Religion and Spirituality boards and forums with a deep urge to bash all believers in God and guru's, thinking we alone know the truth about life, thinking that empirical science is the only valid way to approach life's riddles, but when we turn off our pc's and laptops: there she sits on the couch, the living refutation of everything we have just written down with so much certainty.

    Every woman is a spiritual entity, because she is the living evidence of the existence of a creative force in the universe. She is a walking Goddess in our house. We know it and in the silence of our heart we respond to it with mixed feelings: it fascinates us, we are ashamed by it, it enrages us, it mystifies us.

    Most of all we deeply love it and yearn for it: this living embodiment of the spirituality we so feverishly try to deny. We do not feel complete when she is not around.
     
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    When the mind is in pain and suffers, it seeks a solution to get out of its misery. It goes on a quest for happiness. This quest wearies the already weary mind even more. Happiness now becomes so crucial to us that we cannot relax anymore. We are now unable to sleep. We cannot sit still and do nothing. 'Do something!', the mind says. 'Make me happy!'

    This restlessness and sleeplessness of our weary mind eventually leads us further down the road of depression. Brooding over our brooding makes us brood even more. We cannot turn our mind, so desperately searching for happiness, down.

    This is all a waste of energy. We will never succeed in finding happiness with our mind. So the first thing to do, -to stop wasting our energy-, is to give up seeking answers with the mind and totally accept the fact that we are in a poor condition, right now. This acceptance and embrace of our suffering will, in a natural way, give us the energy to recover.
     
  4. JanFBrouwer
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    “The 'Beyond-being' does not refer to a some-thing, since it doesn't posit any-thing. […] It merely indicates that It is 'not that'.” ~Plotinus Enneads V.5.6 11-17~

    We cannot say about God that It is 'this or that'. It is not like anything we see or feel with our senses or understand with our mind. In our mystical practice this entails that we refrain from speaking about the Ultimate Source of life. We cannot know if It planned the world or made some Intelligent Design for it, nor started the process of Darwinian evolution, nor any such thing. Religion should refrain from trying to answer these questions. These questions are for science to answer (as their objective value is concerned).

    God is not ID nor evolution nor life force or anything. It is beyond all that. We make God poor and small when we reduce It to such qualifications.

    This is not to say that the Divine is utterly unknowable. We may detect the workings of the Divine both in the world surrounding us, as well as in our selves. The immanent God, the God as It reveals Itself in this world, we can know by looking at the world or by looking in ourselves, trying to detect Its qualities. But what God is in Itself remains for all ages to come a complete mystery.

    Religion is one of those mysteries in our life that make us ecstatic without us fulling comprehending the reason why. We enjoy music and art without knowing what music exactly is, without knowing how it succeeds in making us so happy and ecstatic. The same it is with love and other enjoyments of the soul.

    All this makes the word God superfluous. We can enjoy the mystery without naming the mystery God.
     
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    Fundamental principles build up a sort of tension blocking our enlightenment and happiness. It may be compared to risky behavior we are trying to avoid by responding to it with 'I'll never have sex again', or 'Ill never drink again' or 'I'll never eat American hamburgers again'. These fundamental principles, conversely and paradoxically, drive us into the arms of the unhealthy behavior we are trying to avoid. The allurement becomes greater when we resist too much (example: the Southern States of the US, having the strongest views on God and marriage morality, show the highest rate of porn consumerism).

    The same it is with principle views on God. In this case it becomes 'I believe in the God I believe in', which is altogether something different from 'I believe in God'. In the first case we think we know who or what God is, turning him/it into an unalterable principle.

    When I enter my prayers or meditations with preconceived notions about what or who it is I'm coming back to, I close myself out of precisely what I'm seeking. I tend to miss it, because 'God' is always bigger, greater and stronger than anything I might conceive of.

    Turning God into a principle is to miss it altogether.

    "Pray God that we may be free of God" ~Meister Eckhart~
     
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    The reason men love women so much is because their only other choices for sex are with other guys or animals.
     
  7. JanFBrouwer
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    Our attachments makes us suffer. We feel there must be something in this life of us that makes it worthwhile to invest in it. There must be something in it for 'me'. But all the while the process of life is impersonal. It doesn't care much about us, the John and Mary we are, as long as our biological needs are met with food, shelter and propagation.

    These needs are easily met for most of us. So we do not suffer so much biologically as well as psychologically. We expect too much. These expectations makes us cling to life, like the donkey cannot let go of the carrot dangling in front of his eyes.

    Stepping back from these expectations and desires first feels like a kind death. But when we have grown accustomed to merely watching without the 'what's in it for me?', we feel we enter a new life of tremendous freedom.

    It's fear of this psychological death that prevents us from being blissfully free.
     
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    So being poor and having nothing is bliss? How's that working out for you?
     
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    Avatar4321 Diamond Member Gold Supporting Member

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    First, who?

    Second, What?

    Third, why are you doing this?
     
  10. JanFBrouwer
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    Not necessarily. The same it is with being rich. It is no garantuee for being blissful. Some basic needs have to be met. But happiness depends on more than economy.
     

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