Dr. Jeffrey Kripal Explores the Erotic in the Mystical & Religious |369|

again, these are fair points Alex, but think big picture, UN style (not that we should be a fan of the UN I can tell you horror stories)

The simple answer is there’s always some grey, but as helping Mischelle understand, we mustn’t let the perfect ruin the good. Again, don’t let the perfect rob the good.

We can always come up with some outliers of “yeah, but” however, just like a small portion of negative NDEs, don’t let that rob the overall 90% positive wonderful human NDEs accounted for. At some point, the child you fought for in Somalia who gets his vaccine and survives the bullshit childhood disease his pediatric friends once died from, at one point he will grow old and grey and may very well become a child molester. So we deal with it then. It does not change the principles and basic human rights we can stand for. Of course there’s is grey areas like amount of equal pay, affirmative action, abortion, but none of these were listed.

We are talking the brain dead obvious stuff for the general population, which yes will include some good guys and bad guys, but I don’t hear any of you arguing with our subways here in the US to start morality screening before the can come aboard and use our tax dollars even though they may be an undiscovered child molester. To some degree, we decided as society to let everyone use our bridges, planes, hospitals and public transit without knowing the true morality of anyone (unless convicted of something they’ve really did).

When dealing with public policy for folks like me in the business of it or folks just discuss/voting on it, my message to you After years of work with professors and local leaders from various cultures and lands and languages, is “don’t let the perfect ruin the good”. Yes ‘good’ can have some debate of what is, but ultimately let us not make a mountain of molehill when discussing access to food, water, shelter, medicine, physical safety from rape/murder. We don’t want philosophical masturbation blinding us to their “goodness”

John
 

Alex

Administrator
again, these are fair points Alex, but think big picture, UN style (not that we should be a fan of the UN I can tell you horror stories)

The simple answer is there’s always some grey, but as helping Mischelle understand, we mustn’t let the perfect ruin the good. Again, don’t let the perfect rob the good.

We can always come up with some outliers of “yeah, but” however, just like a small portion of negative NDEs, don’t let that rob the overall 90% positive wonderful human NDEs accounted for. At some point, the child you fought for in Somalia who gets his vaccine and survives the bullshit childhood disease his pediatric friends once died from, at one point he will grow old and grey and may very well become a child molester. So we deal with it then. It does not change the principles and basic human rights we can stand for. Of course there’s is grey areas like amount of equal pay, affirmative action, abortion, but none of these were listed.

We are talking the brain dead obvious stuff for the general population, which yes will include some good guys and bad guys, but I don’t hear any of you arguing with our subways here in the US to start morality screening before the can come aboard and use our tax dollars even though they may be an undiscovered child molester. To some degree, we decided as society to let everyone use our bridges, planes, hospitals and public transit without knowing the true morality of anyone (unless convicted of something they’ve really did).

When dealing with public policy for folks like me in the business of it or folks just discuss/voting on it, my message to you After years of work with professors and local leaders from various cultures and lands and languages, is “don’t let the perfect ruin the good”. Yes ‘good’ can have some debate of what is, but ultimately let us not make a mountain of molehill when discussing access to food, water, shelter, medicine, physical safety from rape/murder. We don’t want philosophical masturbation blinding us to their “goodness”

John
I totally get yr point... and generally agree. then again, I guess that's why I like Ram Das's story so much. I reminds me to check myself... to remember the slippery slope... and contemplate the whether God really needs my help with whatever cause I'm focused on :)
 
Yes, an opportunity for the first major lesson in in how to approach the world’s struggle with basic human rights— false equivalencies and letting the “perfect ruin the good”. This was certainly not intentional on your part but a major talking point for my seminars whereby a hint of grey gets to fog the obvious.
I think it is extremely hard to know what to do about poor parts of the world, and unfortunately it is easy to end up making matters much worse.

For example, for years now, the US has intervened militarily in one country after another - supposedly to bring democracy to whatever country was under attack. Invariably this has made a bad situation much, much worse - think of Syria, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. I very much hope that President Trump will resist the temptation to intervene abroad. His "America First" policy can by described as a selfish policy, but in reality it may be the kindest thing for everyone.

I have come to feel that politics based on making people feel guilty produces awful results.

Part of the problem is that it is easy to talk about "The World's struggle with basic human rights", but actually that struggle is often about something utterly different - usually the battle between various competing religious groups.

@Skeptiko001 You might find it useful to split off the political part of your ideas into a distinct thread, and continue to discuss your thoughts about NDE's etc here.

David
 
David you are correct and this may be a bette rthread elsewhere but the short reminder is you are completely correct assuming an “American led Western POV” for our democracy results in disaster. You are arguing something correct which I did not address and do not disagree with.

The point of basic human rights i mentioned, is that if leaders across the board both high and low, and at least some small percent of the world’s 7 billion people, could take effective part in pushing (regardless of whatever country’s political landscape), is the effective, correct, proactive thing humanity ought to be at by now. The common Western criticism of this is the assumption of ensuring these basic human rights automatically includes “democratizing” third world countries. I spent several years of research, disscertation and work in these hellhole areas understanding why missionaries, NGOs, the UN and foreign military including Special Forces, will never be the answer but always a band aid of wannabe nation-building and security training which always falls short in major aspects.

Better to relate to MLKJ’s Civil Rights movement as how ground-up risk and ball busting work and sacrifice made it happen. So ensuring basic common sense worldwide human rights ought to be through those lens. The problem US military intervention has parsed out to create an automatic “Western-critical” lens people have without knowing/realizing it, for which I don’t blame them as long as it’s cleared up in the epiphany analogy provided now.

John
 

Alex

Administrator
I think it is extremely hard to know what to do about poor parts of the world, and unfortunately it is easy to end up making matters much worse.

For example, for years now, the US has intervened militarily in one country after another - supposedly to bring democracy to whatever country was under attack. Invariably this has made a bad situation much, much worse - think of Syria, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. I very much hope that President Trump will resist the temptation to intervene abroad. His "America First" policy can by described as a selfish policy, but in reality it may be the kindest thing for everyone.

I have come to feel that politics based on making people feel guilty produces awful results.

Part of the problem is that it is easy to talk about "The World's struggle with basic human rights", but actually that struggle is often about something utterly different - usually the battle between various competing religious groups.

@Skeptiko001 You might find it useful to split off the political part of your ideas into a distinct thread, and continue to discuss your thoughts about NDE's etc here.

David
I also like it when folks tie stuff back to the ep we're discussing. In this case yr point about "but in reality it may be the kindest thing for everyone" seems very relevant to Dr. Kripal's nonsense about non-self-reflective Christians... who IMO are not only much kidner than Jeff's liberal arts buddies, but are standing on firmer scientific/philosophical footing.
 
Regarding the perceived dearth of distressing NDE's at the NDERF website as was discussed earlier in this thread, I'd like to submit this link to an experience recently submitted. Although a bit lengthy, Tammy's story is initially a bit disturbing but ultimately pleasant and heart warming to read. It may cause anyone contemplating abortion to perhaps reconsider:

http://www.nderf.org/Experiences/1tammy_h_possible_nde.html
 
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I'm sure they are in his book:
99. Dr. Jeffrey Long Takes On Critics of, Evidence of the ... - Skeptiko

BTW I'm not against yr claim re dNDEs... I just don't like the way yr building yr case, i.e. "it obvious from the website that the survey is flawed." so, I'm happy to explore this in depth... happy to do a whole skeptiko ep about it because I think it's a really interesting/important topic, but I'd encourage you to approach yr claim from a serious scientific standpoint and deliver the goods... I'll be happy to pick up the ball and run with it from there.

again, to summarize my position -- if you think dNDEs are underreported in NDErf DB, then you need to provide evidence. It's not enough to say the NDERF website appears too light and love for yr taste... you have to show that it's affecting the data.

at this point we have 30+ yrs of NDE research from a lot of different researchers. if yr point is supported by the #s you should be able to make yr case.

for example, has the NDERF data shifted toward the "light and love" hypothesis as the site/research has grown in popularity and the findings of Dr. Long have become more well known? this would seem to me to be a legit question. IDK the answer... but if it has that would support yr claim... if it's hasn't that would support my position.
Another thing to consider about NDEs is the parallel literature on OBEs. I am not aware of any particularly scientific accounts of OBE experiences, only a massive body of first hand experiencer account. I have had one compelling and lucid OBE. My partner has had numerous - including on that interested a dream experience I was having. Now that was very interesting.

My point is that I accept NDEs more because of my OBE. They are essentially the same thing - induced out of body experiences, whether that induction is trauma, assistance from other agencies, or self-induction. When we add to this the phenomenon of lucid dreaming and what is loosely classed as 'shamanic journeying' (well the real stuff versus the imagined) there is a vast array of evidence of the capacity for human centred consciousness to function beyond the physical body.

For me evidence that consciousness is also body related is strong and valid. Its just that it is not an exclusive connection. By that I mean that the physical world demands a particular kind of consciousness, what medieval thinkers referred to as the 'animal soul'. Here I think we moderns suffer from a lack of perspective. Even early Christian thinkers distinguished between a divine and animal soul. And in esoteric traditions humans have up to 7 types of consciousness. Here we are struggling with ideas depleted by later hardline Christian dogma and theology, and the stark insistence of materialists that consciousness is an epi-phenomenon. There is no actual evidence for that. At best it has to be a conservative provisional position because a certain kind of inquiry does not currently yield data that allows a different conclusion.

But the 'scientific' position is unsettled by a flagrant dogmatic insistence that is, when we boil down the arguments, a mere opinion based on guesswork. At a certain level of thinking there is no compelling evidence either way, so the options are to make what amounts to ma metaphysical guess or go sceptical and decline to provide an opinion.

I ws listening to a cosy conversation last year between two prominent atheists. They derided the 'agnostic' position as gutless, asserting that it meant one did not have the "balls" to commit to a particular stance. There was a time when the agnostic was the thoughtful and reticent thinker, not an intellectual coward (for which read moral coward in the politics of belief).

In Authors of the Impossible Kripal reminds us of the dogmatic tyrannies exerted by religion and secular thinking -neither being prepared to lose ground to actual science. Now I do not agree that science is what material scientists say it is. Stuff that is amenable to repeated confirming experimentation is the easy stuff. There are aspects to human reality that are simply not stable enough to be subjected to repeatable experimentation - and to reject them as beyond reason is just absurd. Science is a disciplined inquiry. That's what it has always been. Scientists of a particular philosophical gang do not get to define what science is, and we must never cede to them that right.

Long's work on NDEs, and the work of others is good science. It may not meet the requirements of what material scientists say is good science, but that is irrelevant because NDEs are not about material science. There are endless turf wars among scientists about what is an is not science. It is true that some things seek to trade off the perceived respectability of the word 'science', and maybe there is a case to be made - political science might be a case. Is 'social science' a real science? In all areas of inquiry beliefs and dogmas screw up pristine rational thought. So maybe we can throw the argument back on the 'respectable sciences'. What is real science?

The argument that NDEs are not real is actually confined to a very small set of people arguing in a very narrow manner. They think that is good science - to argue so tightly and narrowly - because it shows tight intellectual control. Save that for cryptic crosswords. An examination of the history of science will tell you that kind of thinking never gets anybody anywhere. It is grounded in an assertion that is tightly held but unproved - a guess passionately believed to be right.

Some years ago studies into the experiences of recently bereaved women led to data indicating that most experienced some kind of post mortem presence or contact from the recently dearly departed. Of course, for the materialist, that can't be real. So it was theorised that the brain took pity of the grieving widow and permitted her a hallucination of her dead husband to ease her pain. A compassionate brain? What an utterly ludicrous idea. What was wrong with accepting what the widows said was real? Hubby pops back in spirit form to say he is okay.
 

Alex

Administrator
Another thing to consider about NDEs is the parallel literature on OBEs. I am not aware of any particularly scientific accounts of OBE experiences, only a massive body of first hand experiencer account. I have had one compelling and lucid OBE. My partner has had numerous - including on that interested a dream experience I was having. Now that was very interesting.

My point is that I accept NDEs more because of my OBE. They are essentially the same thing - induced out of body experiences, whether that induction is trauma, assistance from other agencies, or self-induction. When we add to this the phenomenon of lucid dreaming and what is loosely classed as 'shamanic journeying' (well the real stuff versus the imagined) there is a vast array of evidence of the capacity for human centred consciousness to function beyond the physical body.

For me evidence that consciousness is also body related is strong and valid. Its just that it is not an exclusive connection. By that I mean that the physical world demands a particular kind of consciousness, what medieval thinkers referred to as the 'animal soul'. Here I think we moderns suffer from a lack of perspective. Even early Christian thinkers distinguished between a divine and animal soul. And in esoteric traditions humans have up to 7 types of consciousness. Here we are struggling with ideas depleted by later hardline Christian dogma and theology, and the stark insistence of materialists that consciousness is an epi-phenomenon. There is no actual evidence for that. At best it has to be a conservative provisional position because a certain kind of inquiry does not currently yield data that allows a different conclusion.

But the 'scientific' position is unsettled by a flagrant dogmatic insistence that is, when we boil down the arguments, a mere opinion based on guesswork. At a certain level of thinking there is no compelling evidence either way, so the options are to make what amounts to ma metaphysical guess or go sceptical and decline to provide an opinion.

I ws listening to a cosy conversation last year between two prominent atheists. They derided the 'agnostic' position as gutless, asserting that it meant one did not have the "balls" to commit to a particular stance. There was a time when the agnostic was the thoughtful and reticent thinker, not an intellectual coward (for which read moral coward in the politics of belief).

In Authors of the Impossible Kripal reminds us of the dogmatic tyrannies exerted by religion and secular thinking -neither being prepared to lose ground to actual science. Now I do not agree that science is what material scientists say it is. Stuff that is amenable to repeated confirming experimentation is the easy stuff. There are aspects to human reality that are simply not stable enough to be subjected to repeatable experimentation - and to reject them as beyond reason is just absurd. Science is a disciplined inquiry. That's what it has always been. Scientists of a particular philosophical gang do not get to define what science is, and we must never cede to them that right.

Long's work on NDEs, and the work of others is good science. It may not meet the requirements of what material scientists say is good science, but that is irrelevant because NDEs are not about material science. There are endless turf wars among scientists about what is an is not science. It is true that some things seek to trade off the perceived respectability of the word 'science', and maybe there is a case to be made - political science might be a case. Is 'social science' a real science? In all areas of inquiry beliefs and dogmas screw up pristine rational thought. So maybe we can throw the argument back on the 'respectable sciences'. What is real science?

The argument that NDEs are not real is actually confined to a very small set of people arguing in a very narrow manner. They think that is good science - to argue so tightly and narrowly - because it shows tight intellectual control. Save that for cryptic crosswords. An examination of the history of science will tell you that kind of thinking never gets anybody anywhere. It is grounded in an assertion that is tightly held but unproved - a guess passionately believed to be right.

Some years ago studies into the experiences of recently bereaved women led to data indicating that most experienced some kind of post mortem presence or contact from the recently dearly departed. Of course, for the materialist, that can't be real. So it was theorised that the brain took pity of the grieving widow and permitted her a hallucination of her dead husband to ease her pain. A compassionate brain? What an utterly ludicrous idea. What was wrong with accepting what the widows said was real? Hubby pops back in spirit form to say he is okay.
 
Long's work on NDEs, and the work of others is good science.
I've pointed out some serious issues with his data collection, and no one has stepped up to provide the journal references to his work. Has Long's work been published in a peer reviewed journal? You seem to be saying that the scientific method doesn't count for much, which is an opinion you are entitled to, but why try to pass off work as scientific that isn't if you really feel that way?

I've noticed that there are a number of researchers involved with the "life after death" crowd that do some peer reviewed stuff to keep up their contact with academia, but their peer reviewed material is quite different from what they promote in non-scientific circles as science. The heaven tourists don't understand science, and don't really like it, but for some reason they want a guy with credentials to say science backs up their belief system.

Long has set up a website that appears to skew the data towards a specific religious POV.

Concerns about skewing data for religious reasons are nothing new in NDE research.

http://www.newdualism.org/nde-papers/Ring/Ring-Journal of Near-Death Studies_2000-18-215-244.pdf
 
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Alex

Administrator
...and no one has stepped up to provide the journal references to his work. Has Long's work been published in a peer reviewed journal?
fair point. if you would pls pursue it with NDERF/jeff long I will be happy to report yr findings re concerns. pls go get the data for us.
 
fair point. if you would pls pursue it with NDERF/jeff long I will be happy to report yr findings re concerns. pls go get the data for us.
Alex, I've looked and I can't find it. I don't have access to Dr Long. You and Garry have had contact with him, so can't you tell me if the journal articles exist? I've found articles by the Longs on other topics, but not the topic of their book.
 

Alex

Administrator
Alex, I've looked and I can't find it. I don't have access to Dr Long. You and Garry have had contact with him, so can't you tell me if the journal articles exist? I've found articles by the Longs on other topics, but not the topic of their book.
I will send you PM.
 
Alex, I've looked and I can't find it. I don't have access to Dr Long. You and Garry have had contact with him, so can't you tell me if the journal articles exist? I've found articles by the Longs on other topics, but not the topic of their book.
I should clarify, K9, I have never had contact with Dr Jeff Long, only with his wife Jody who some years ago was in search of people who would volunteer to translate experiences submitted in foreign languages, Dutch being one of them. A little while after I started doing a few that she would email me, I had a rather severe stroke in Dec.2011 which left me nearly half blind and quite disoriented, I could hardly at first write my name. I let Jody know about this and told her I would need a bit of time to recover and relearn things. I recontacted her several months later to let her know I was ready to resume. My heart is with this work they are doing. I've said to her that I believe the world is slowly changing for the better as more people read the experience stories. You may have noticed God, maybe not so much religion is back in the picture for most people. I should add that I do maybe only one or two Dutch translations a year.
 
At K9– you do know that there are hospital-verified scientific accounts of which small details but real details nonetheless have shown verified details of things like coffee spilled on doctors, putting notes up in a patients room or odd objects seen on high up shelves far above head height, have all been seen happening past 2-3 minutes of clinical cardiac death with flatline (and as a medical provider I can assure you there’s no brain activity after 3 minutes of flatline just ask any neurologist) and that when the few patients lucky enough to survive and be resuscitated Cosme back, immediately reported to a doctor or nurse what they saw which was then corroborated with others.

As for hard evidence and proof of hard objective verified objects seen out of body in a controlled study, that’s easy and old news. Everyone should go to here and to make it fast scroll down to section 8D. https://www.near-death.com/experiences/out-of-body/charles-tart.html I have done plenty of out of body work like this and I don’t even think I’m all that great because I’ve seen the real Jedis out there, it humbles me to know I’m still at the bottom of an endless mountain you climb forever. But I am fortunate to at least know that mountain exists and is worth the climb.


I can say one thing for sure, Skeptiko forum peaks my interest far more than all the medical societies I belong to!

*please let me know if link does not upload there is a separate one Linked on the university’s website I believe
 
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Alex

Administrator
I can say one thing for sure, Skeptiko forum peaks my interest far more than all the medical societies I belong to!

Ryan
so glad you feel that way :) I do too. I think we all have to do our part and drag a bunch of really smart/interesting people he to keep the dialog going... it's invigorating.
 
I enjoyed this podcast and might even buy his book though I have so many to get through first. Note that I haven't really followed the conversation closely but I want to post this as it seems potentially relevant.

http://hiddenexperience.blogspot.co.uk/2017/12/love-and-saucers-now-available-for.html

I plan to watch the video but haven't yet. I don't mind the cost but that will, of course, stop many from watching it and so that may kill any conversation about it.

Anyway. Just wanted to post as seemed very relevant to the topic.
 
B

Baccarat

The Secret Teachings of All Ages by Manley P. Hall is fascinating. It is a masterful compendium of esoteric teachings of all time. It is a summation of hidden wisdom from the arcane and mystical teachings of Druidic, Mithraic, Christian, Gnostic, Odinic, Gothic, Eleusinian, Orphic, Bacchic, Dionysian, Platonic, Atlantean, Cabric, Hermetic, Zodiacal, Astrological, Chaldean, Delphic, Orphic, Dodonean, Pythagorean, Numerological, Hiramic, Paracelsian, Mosaic, Qabbalistic, Sephirothic, Rosicrucian, Alchemical, Masonic, Islamic, Native American, Mayan and Neo-Platonic traditions. I learned much from reading this massive work (over 2.5 pounds). But there were four main ideas that I drew from it. First, no philosophy, mythos or religion can stand alone. None came into existence on its own. The later ones evolved from the earlier ones. They all borrowed from or were influenced by the others. Second, none can lay a valid claim to either exclusivity or primacy. Any attempt to do so can only lead to contradiction and confusion. Wisdom is a fabric and all the threads are inseparably woven together. Third, I found there to be a validation of Hamlet's oft quoted observation from Act I, Scene V, "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy." It is folly to lay claim to a completeness of understanding. There is always much more beyond the cloud of unknowing. Finally, I came away with a greater understanding of the adage, "Those who say, don't know; and those who know, don't say." Understanding has as much to do with the heart as with the head. Much of wisdom has traditionally been hidden, awaiting to be passed on to those who have grown in spiritual preparedness. It seems to be more experiential than cerebral. In the words of Reikichi Kita and Kiichi Nagaya, "To one who has had the experience, there is no need to explain it. To one who has not, there is no way to explain it. What to do but exclaim."(less)The Secret Teachings of All Ages by Manley P. Hall is fascinating. It is a masterful compendium of esoteric teachings of all time. It is a summation of hidden wisdom from the arcane and mystical teachings of Druidic, Mithraic, Christian, Gnostic, Odinic, Gothic, Eleusinian, Orphic, Bacchic, Dionysian, Platonic, Atlantean, Cabric, Hermetic, Zodiacal, Astrological, Chaldean, Delphic, Orphic, Dodonean, Pythagorean, Numerological, Hiramic, Paracelsian, Mosaic, Qabbalistic, Sephirothic, Rosicrucian, Alchemical, Masonic, Islamic, Native American, Mayan and Neo-Platonic traditions. I learned much from reading this massive work (over 2.5 pounds). But there were four main ideas that I drew from it. First, no philosophy, mythos or religion can stand alone. None came into existence on its own. The later ones evolved from the earlier ones. They all borrowed from or were influenced by the others. Second, none can lay a valid claim to either exclusivity or primacy. Any attempt to do so can only lead to contradiction and confusion. Wisdom is a fabric and all the threads are inseparably woven together. Third, I found there to be a validation of Hamlet's oft quoted observation from Act I, Scene V, "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy." It is folly to lay claim to a completeness of understanding. There is always much more beyond the cloud of unknowing. Finally, I came away with a greater understanding of the adage, "Those who say, don't know; and those who know, don't say." Understanding has as much to do with the heart as with the head. Much of wisdom has traditionally been hidden, awaiting to be passed on to those who have grown in spiritual preparedness. It seems to be more experiential than cerebral. In the words of Reikichi Kita and Kiichi Nagaya, "To one who has had the experience, there is no need to explain it. To one who has not, there is no way to explain it. What to do but exclaim."(less)
 
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