One cannot awaken someone who is pretending to be asleep. Just as there exists a twisted cynicism which the poseur may adopt as their expression of skepticism, even so spirituality may be adorned as a kind of ornament-appointed garment. To my best perception, the purpose of our life is to disabuse our self of these false spiritual dreams – Where one is corrupt in their skepticism, there also will they be corrupt in their heart.
A life which serves to develop both, was never meant to be easy.
Upon occasion I will recall standing in the vestry of the church in which I was married, with my father, the best man at my wedding. The music was playing and it was just about time for the groom and the groomsmen to step out into the chapel. I recall remarking to my father, that I felt like a piece of cut wood, freshly hewn, leveled, sanded and cleaned – ready to be glued to its matching piece. What was significant in this was the sense that, it was not that I was crafted into something of a higher order which was now prepared for such an event, rather that part of me was now stripped away instead. The task of preparation at hand was to strip away the darkness, not pretend to become goodness. In my journey, and to the best of my estimation, this paradox is analogous to our life’s sojourn – our reason for existing to begin with, inside this hell we call ‘reality’.
The misunderstanding of this spiritual principle has become a modern disease, a large infection of sorts inside the current culture of fakeness and pretense. What I think has become manifest in particular with President Donald Trump is a popping of this festering sore. A draining which has to do with spotlighting those pretending to the role of goodness and spirituality; the religious and non-religious alike who lord it over the rest of society, enacting harm on those they hate through seemingly virtuous activity. Antifa and Proud Boys are simply the clowns of this very large ontological circus act – as the malignancy extends much deeper than this surface display.
In my journey, I have found that true spirituality has nothing to do with houses of worship, virtue, morality, God-fearing, angels, charity, goodness, niceness nor compassion-politics. Fake enlightenment is a clever game – but a ruse nonetheless. Darkness always come dressed in a costume of authority, goodness, niceness and correctness. Darkness screams when it is spotlighted, and accordingly there is a lot of screaming going on right now in America among the enlightened elite. Beware of those who posture with their forms of skepticism or spirituality, in order to compel you to deny or believe according to their desires. This desire to control, signals other than maturity inside.
What follows is what I have learned, through this particular life suffering and burden set I have been assigned to carry. This of course is my journey, and may not necessarily be yours.
There are those who demonstrate spiritual principles, but rarely are cognizant of it, nor do they highlight it as such.
There are those who struggle earnestly in suffering to make this journey manifest in their own lives.
From each of these, we may learn.
But the character from whom one cannot learn is the spiritually enlightened and the one who points out the transgression.
Those who fail to understand that spirituality is not an instructed qualification, virtue identity, office nor acquisition.
If spirituality were so easy and could be a state of adornment as such, there would be no need to be here at all.
You are here precisely because you cannot make a claim to spirituality.
This is why the higher spirits refuse to instruct us as to what to do.
And lower spirits are full of advice, accusation and admonition.
Skepticism and spirituality are closely intertwined. After all, it is the quest for truth which leads us upon the spiritual sojourn to begin with. The philosophy which underpins our scientific integrity, part of our search for truth – is indeed skepticism. The integrity one applies inside one discipline, will spill over and influence the other.
Where one is corrupt in their skepticism, there also will they be corrupt in their heart.
Pretending to Be Asleep (The Complicated)
Spirituality is not a grandiose, far reaching, visceral, elite aspiration of the enlightened. These are the deceptions which destroy the fabric of a society. They are all forms of easy and surreptitious hate (the Costume).
Concealing intent under a cloak of niceness and social leveraging
Adopting symbolic stances of compassion & virtue
Advocating for causes in support of anyone who looks different from the one group who looks like those you dislike (Inverse Negation Fallacy)
Sitting on a mountain top in Nepal
Communing with spirits or becoming a medium
Cul de Sac – becoming poor and detached from commerce, sitting in your apartment and frothing at those who you perceived have harmed you
Cul de Sac – living off the land/hermit existence/guru existence
Cul de Sac – demonstrating how ‘God’ has blessed you with material accoutrements
Cul de Sac – becoming a starlet and appearing to support the victims and the injusticed
Preaching quick result gospels, prosperity and enlightenment techniques
Being a member of the compassionate political party
Advocating for progressive causes of virtue
Appearing to ‘not be a racist’ (you are, guaranteed)
Meditation and inner voice work
Casting spells, magic levitation and conjuring and focusing of work upon a harboring of resentment
Wanting what someone else has/Wanting something for nothing (greed)
Adopting the appearance of victim-ness, humility or quietness (especially when employed as a weapon)
Begrudgingly taking a job serving others (most every job serves others, there are just different roles)
Concealing motivating anger and resentment (everyone has anger, some pretend on top of that)
Praying and doing Holy Writ study/memorization
Fascinating one’s self with ‘being stoic’
Speaking in undisciplined logic and definition, ambiguity, prevaricating, context shuffling, confusing, clouding and obfuscating (and then pretending to have not lied)
Attending regular services in a religious uniform or costume
Allocating OPM to the poor – or advocating for taxes which will never touch you personally
Socialism, globalism, ‘without borders’, fake unity and equality of outcome
Being brainlessly anti-conflict and despising those who serve in conflict
A peace which causes more suffering than its antithetical war ever could
Attacking those who do not appear to champion the downtrodden ornaments you have pinned to your costume
Advocating for social justice (especially as a weapon of hate)
Examining others as to how compliant their visceral appearances are to all the above – establishing buckets for them accordingly
Being constantly on the run from personal accountability
Trying to ‘save the world’
Blaming the sins of the world on money or capitalism (not even knowing what either is)
Specialize and wallow in guilt, blame and resentment
Fleeing from self, one’s entire life (through mysticism, correctness, appearance, busyness, possessions, substances and pretense)
Authentic Dreams (The Straightforward)
Spirituality (skepticism), from the hard lessons I have been given, is actually very straightforward and very local.
Being straightforward, but not under the self aggrandizement of ‘I tell it like it is’
Your life is your meditation
Going to look for one’s self – epoché
Scepter means in Latin, to ‘palm’, hold, touch or examine – one who focuses upon methods and fruits
Cynic means in Latin, ‘dogged’, doglike in denial, doubting, scoffing – one who focuses on identity, correctness and the good and bad people
Hold those who have plotted harm, accountable
Serving those on journey with you, and within your reach
Enduring and/or overcoming as applicable – the unfairness and suffering you have been assigned – with faithfulness/perseverance
Examining your own evil, facing and acknowledging it, and taking redemptive action
Forgiving self and others
Stepping in to help and serve with the skills you have – inside that which is presented before you
Disciplining your mind, words, clarity, logic and delivery
Understanding value versus that which is worthless
Understanding that capital earned, is capital to be reinvested – and that capital is not just money
Encouraging the man standing next to you
Learning the methodology of darkness and being able to spot its disguise, before the training wheels are stripped off and you are thrust into The All That Is
There is never a perfect altruism – there is never a perfect scenario of advancement where no one gets hurt
Accept responsibility – even if you can devise a way in which to make it ‘not your fault’
Never deal in the currency of guilt, blame, offenses or resentment (GBOR). Because if this is the capital you carry into your next sojourn, this will be the currency you must spend there
Working, resting, playing, consuming – all in integrity of service to the above
These are the uncomplicated truths which link spirituality and skepticism. A central tenet set of ethical skepticism. Spiritual development is a praxis which we apply to self, and not one well exercised by being instructed or enforced upon others. We learn from witnessing its application, and from those (including one’s self) who struggle to develop it. We learn from suffering and over time.
Moreover, we do not mature spiritually from being told how to be good, nor by being coerced into its compliance through threat of penalty or compulsion to correct appearances. Such activity only inflates the ego of the ‘teacher/authority’. This is the essence of what is religion. Higher spirits are experienced enough to fully grasp this formal logic principle of spiritual development. Hence, their reluctance to give us advice. Dark spirits in contrast, are full of advice, accusation and admonition. I hold this idea that we can admonish-to-spirituality as incorrect. In this mistake we conflate morality-virtue-ethics, which can be taught, with wisdom-integrity-spirituality, which cannot. Not that the elements of morality-virtue-ethics are incorrect in and of themselves. It is like driving at night with your headlamps on (the correct thing to do) but not realizing that one’s windscreen is opaque. One has only tendered the appearance of being a safe motorist, and is even more dangerous than someone driving with no headlamps at all.
In the day that we define that which is goodness, darkness will skin it and wear it as a costume.
We are not here to learn to be good. We are here to learn the hard lesson praxis of darkness – and to spot its trackways within ourselves.
The Ethical Skeptic, “Of Pretend Sleep and Authentic Dreams”; The Ethical Skeptic, WordPress, 22 Sep 2019; Web, https://wp.me/p17q0e-ak4
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