Rupert Spira + flowers.

#1
Does anybody here really 'get this'. Rupert says that happiness is what we're all seeking, and happiness is another word for God.

It just doesn't do it for me really, but I don't want to dismiss it either. Something just doesn't feel right, always being video' d next to flowers. What's that about? :eek:

 

Brian_the_bard

Lost Pilgrim
Member
#2
Does anybody here really 'get this'. Rupert says that happiness is what we're all seeking, and happiness is another word for God.

It just doesn't do it for me really, but I don't want to dismiss it either. Something just doesn't feel right, always being video' d next to flowers. What's that about? :eek:

Sadly I can't watch it yet but it looks like it is probably the kind of trite nonsense that makes me cringe. :eek:
 
#3
Sadly I can't watch it yet but it looks like it is probably the kind of trite nonsense that makes me cringe. :eek:
Is it 'trite nonsense' though? Bernardo Kastrup posted a tweet (it may have been Facebook, can't remember?) yesterday highly recommending one of Spira's books. As a fan of Kastrup's thinking, what can he see that I can't?

I have listened to tons of 'non-dual' people being interviewed by Rick Archer on Batgap. I have said before, some of them strike me as being very far from me, while others I really enjoy. More of the former than latter, I must confess. I really enjoy listening to Eckhart Tolle for example, I'd love to meet him for a few days, on my own. I think that I might get a sense of 'what he was about', but maybe not.

We are very complex 'things', both mind and body.
 

Brian_the_bard

Lost Pilgrim
Member
#4
Is it 'trite nonsense' though? Bernardo Kastrup posted a tweet (it may have been Facebook, can't remember?) yesterday highly recommending one of Spira's books. As a fan of Kastrup's thinking, what can he see that I can't?

I have listened to tons of 'non-dual' people being interviewed by Rick Archer on Batgap. I have said before, some of them strike me as being very far from me, while others I really enjoy. More of the former than latter, I must confess. I really enjoy listening to Eckhart Tolle for example, I'd love to meet him for a few days, on my own. I think that I might get a sense of 'what he was about', but maybe not.

We are very complex 'things', both mind and body.
When I get back to my own computer I will watch this. I just feel a little uneasy about phrases like "happiness is God" and especially together with pictures of people sitting next to flowers. I have perhaps expressed my beliefs too much in the past so I will try to be a little more philosophical about this one.
 
#5
Rupert says that happiness is what we're all seeking, and happiness is another word for God.
Literally this makes no sense to me: God is a being, not a feeling, no matter how you contort your definitions. But metaphorically? It's not that different to "God is love", which a lot of people accept, and which really means (I think) that God loves us, and that when we experience love, it is by virtue of the love which God has (created) for us.

I watched the video though. I would challenge some of the things he said (e.g. that everything that finite consciousness does is to transcend its finitude, which hopefully I've paraphrased accurately), but others I found worth contemplating (e.g. that happiness is the same no matter its trigger, and that it can be triggered internally). I'm not saying I necessarily agree with anything that Rupert said, just that some of it seems worth reflecting on. Thanks for sharing.
 
#7
I don't see how starting with a debatable definition helps your case.
Not sure how debatable it is. Here are a few definitions that I checked:

merriam-webster.com:

capitalized : the supreme or ultimate reality: such as
a : the Being perfect in power, wisdom, and goodness who is worshipped as creator and ruler of the universe [etc - the other definitions either expressly or implicitly stipulate a being
dictionary.com:

the one Supreme Being, the creator and ruler of the universe. [etc - again, the other definitions expressly or implicitly stipulate a being]
oxforddictionaries.com:

(in Christianity and other monotheistic religions) the creator and ruler of the universe and source of all moral authority; the supreme being. [etc - as per the above]
There were others, but I don't have the energy to copy them in - suffice it to say that all of them defined God as a being too.
 
#8
Oh. I've just realised I have probably totally misunderstood you, Typoz... were you questioning Rupert's definition rather than mine, and did I just waste a post defending myself when you were already on board? If so... oops. How embarrassing.
 
#9
Oh. I've just realised I have probably totally misunderstood you, Typoz... were you questioning Rupert's definition rather than mine, and did I just waste a post defending myself when you were already on board? If so... oops. How embarrassing.
No, you weren't mistaken.

Nevertheless, it is usually said that God is indescribable, immeasurable, to give a specific definition places a limit, when there is no limit.

At any rate, I wouldn't adhere to any of those dictionary definitions - you may have the technicality on your side, despite that, the matter is not settled.
 
#11
Does anybody here really 'get this'. Rupert says that happiness is what we're all seeking, and happiness is another word for God.

It just doesn't do it for me really, but I don't want to dismiss it either. Something just doesn't feel right, always being video' d next to flowers. What's that about? :eek:
The conventional materialistic view is that what is apparently external is capable of influencing inner emotion. Hence getting the job one wants, getting the new bicycle, visiting a prostitute, bungee jumping and all the rest, are thought to be able to cause an inner feeling of happiness. If, however, what is "external" is an illusion, the mere appearance of externality, brought about by the way perception and interpretative thought concretises and projects that appearance outwards, then the causality isn't external, but rather internal.

Of course, if one doesn't accept that what appears external is an illusion, happiness seems to be external in origin, and to have many different causes. But if one does, then happiness comes to be seen more as coming from the inside, and then the question becomes, why do we sometimes seem to feel unhappy, or at best, neither happy nor unhappy? Under the "illusion model", the answer is just the same: believing in externality, some external appearance seems to become the cause. The only way to permanent happiness, presumably, would be to be constantly aware that what the impression our perception and consequent interpretation are relaying to us is false.

The fly in the ointment is that the natural internal state would be deemed to be happiness, rather than a neutral state of neither happiness nor unhappiness. And here, I must confess to being conflicted. To be sure, my personal experience has been that on the rare occasions that (for no apparent reason) I seem to have had spiritual awareness, I have always felt extremely happy regardless of what seems to be going on "external" to me. But a part of me wonders whether this isn't just another kind of projection: something seemingly at the end of the internal processing chain that, were one to go a little deeper, glosses over neutrality the feeling of happiness.

I think, for instance, about NDEs where a feeling of transcendent happiness is often reported. But this is often associated with conditioned interpretations: one is seeing Jesus, angels, much loved relatives, and so forth. Evidently, NDEers aren't totally beyond interpretation influencing their experience; aren't perceiving what is actually going on, but something, albeit closer to reality than is usual, different from it. What is actually going on may be neutral with respect to feeling, and if it is, the objective of human life isn't to experience happiness, but to experience reality sans such feelings overlaying it. What do human feelings (emotions), after all, have to do with reality? Reality, one assumes, is what is regardless of how we feel about it.

So I'm not 100% sure that Spira's opinion is correct. At best, he may be pointing at something that isn't the absolute end point. I could be wrong, of course, but for the moment, I'm ambivalent about it.
 
#12
I really appreciate this thoughtful post, thank you Michael, it's exactly the type of post I was looking for.

Before I forget, I must ask. How long do the rare 'periods of extreme happiness' that you experience, last for?

It just doesn't seem to me that we should spend many lifetimes incarnating here on earth, simply to eventually stumble on the answer to everything being 'finding happiness', although, like you, I think he may be 'pointing at something...' I presume Spira believes in reincarnation? His videos seem to be about the same thing, the inside/outside dream within a dream type thing. All this might be true, but is it truly the reason we're here?

I much prefer Tom Campbell's theory, which says we are here to learn to become love, while doing so we gain wisdom along the way. It sits much more comfortably with me, both intuitively and logically. At the same time, I can't warm to some aspects of Tom's whole MBT, have you visited his forum? Geez, It's not the kind of place that I would think 'love' is what comes to mind. The moderators don't like to hear any criticism of Tom for example. Over the years I have seen many people get fed up with their attitude and leave. I know and quite like the head moderator, Ted, but he definitely doesn't suffer fools. In my opinion, he assumes people are fools far too easily. Try saying something negative about Tom, I predict that it won't end well!

Tom himself, doesn't seem to be full of himself, in fact I have a big soft spot for him. But some things he says, I just don't buy, for example, time (as on earth)exists everywhere.

I wish I could contact Bernardo, and ask him privately what he sees in Spira that's special. Unfortunately,that isn't easy to do with Bernardo any longer.

And the flowers. Always having them in his videos just points to something I don't feel 'easy' about? Silly, pointless, daft I know, making an issue about them, but they point to something in his person that I can't relate to. Probably it's just me, not him. :)
 
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#13
I really appreciate this thoughtful post, thank you Michael, it's exactly the type of post I was looking for.
And thank you. I'm glad you seem to have appreciated my response.
Before I forget, I must ask. How long do the rare 'periods of extreme happiness' that you experience, last for?
The longest and most memorable (insofar as I can remember it or re-experience it -- it lasted around two weeks) occurred in 1994 while I was reading Doris Lessing's Canopus in Argos pentalogy. At the time, I was extremely interested in the works of Idries Shah, with whom Lessing had a close association. I can't quite remember which book in the series I was reading, and I can't be sure it was the cause of my experience, or simply coincidental with it. Whatever, I can remember something most peculiar started to happen.

I don't know if you're at all like me, but I frequently find myself thinking of past indiscretions/stupidities and endlessly beating myself up about them; cursing myself for having been, at times, a complete f****** wanker. Well, I was able at that time to perceive these episodes arising, and effortlessly able to brush them off before they managed to hook me into my frequent bouts of self-denigration; in short, I was able to laugh them off before they ever took hold.

It was as if I'd somehow grown, been transformed from an ugly duckling into a magnificent swan. Incidentally, though Hans Christian Anderson is credited with the fable, it may be a relatively modern incarnation of perennial tales such as The king's son, a Sufi story found on p. 217-18 of Idries Shah's book, Tales of the Dervishes. Somehow, I had unwittingly and unaccountably stumbled into a new but strangely familiar landscape. It was utter bliss; I spent those two weeks or so floating on cloud nine being someone completely different from what I usually perceived myself to be: something much grander, able to perceive both myself and anyone else I came across in a totally different and much more compassionate way. I effortlessly loved everyone, experiencing a connection with the whole of humanity, whom I could perceive as being just like me.

Since then, I've periodically experienced somewhat less vivid cousins of this experience, mainly focussed on the sense of connection. Some people seem to be able to bring about such experiences through meditation, which is something I've never been able to do myself. But one way they sometimes come about is through exploring music on YouTube. I'll fortuitously stumble across a video I particularly like, and that will lead me onto other videos and other artists, and before I know it, I've spent hours following the trail of discovery and am completely lost in the sense of connection. Quite why it works, I can't say, and it may not work for you or others, but there you go. Some videos are particularly effective: I've posted some of them here in the past, such as:


and:


-- I could post a number of others, but those will suffice for present purposes. I must stress that what these performances do for me seems to be something over and above emotional arousal; they seem to be capable, at least sometimes, of switching me into a "connected" state of awareness. I speculate that it may have something to do with the specific quality of delivery of the music by the singer or artist(s) involved.

If this, or the YouTube thing in general, doesn't do it for you, there may be other things that do do it for you. I recall occasionally having seen others totally absorbed in doing something they really enjoy doing. It could be anything, such as gardening, playing golf or fishing, even eating out, and I have at times been entranced by how they seem to become transformed into new and apparently different people -- perhaps nearer to what they actually are, even if they (and I) don't know what that is exactly.

There's a term used by Sufis for something like it (a sense of unity in multiplicity) in Arabic -- jam (pronounced "hum"), and of course the Sufis aren't like orthodox muslims in that they recognise the power of music/dancing/rhythm in some of their practices:


and this, which is mesmerising:


This is perhaps akin to what I've mentioned, watching someone being totally absorbed in an activity, when they can seem to lose their ego and one seems to become able see them from a new and different angle; for what they really are, and, as an observer, come closer to what oneself really is. It's possibly a loss or diminution of ego rather than a gain of something; the removal of a barrier experienced in normal perception rather than some kind of enhancement of perception.

Of course, such examples aren't from my own culture and maybe I've accidentally stumbled across something more appropriate for me embedded in popular Western music. The happiness and sheer delight such experiences bring to me seems to be incidental to something else, some underlying reality, and it is this, perhaps, that Rupert Spira is pointing to.

One last point before I leave this topic: I also get such sensations when composing some of my posts here. I spend quite a lot of time and effort getting them just right -- or as near right as I can -- in the sense of as truthfully and accurately as possible saying exactly and only what I want to say. This post, for example, was composed over many hours' (intermittent) activity and reflection.
I wish I could contact Bernardo, and ask him privately what he sees in Spira that's special. Unfortunately,that isn't easy to do with Bernardo any longer.
You should find that Bernardo keeps an eye on postings on his forum. It's quite likely that if you post a new thread with an eyecatching title -- "A question for Bernardo about Rupert Spira" or somesuch -- he will respond.
 
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#14
One last point before I leave this topic: I also get such sensations when composing some of my posts here. I spend quite a lot of time and effort getting them just right -- or as near right as I can -- in the sense of as truthfully and accurately as possible saying exactly and only what I want to say. This post, for example, was composed over many hours' (intermittent) activity and reflection.
If you thought that I appreciated your first post, I really appreciate this one. It's from the heart and those are the type of post that I love reading. It's late now, as I'm tired I will reply tomorrow. In the meantime I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed this post Michael.

I'm fully awake now.

I am quite jealous of your experience, it sounds amazing. If I were to guess I would say that you have indeed experienced that state which Spira, Tolle and many others are talking about. It's probably a temporary (large) raising of consciousness. I can't say I've ever had anything like that, but can certainly say that I can sense the 'magic' from whence it comes when I listen to music. As I think you were getting at, watching the 'special' videos doesn't produce a consistent effect, it probably is down to how 'sensitive' I am at the time I'm listening to it.

That Michael Buble track has a certain energy, the Whitney one too, but less so for me anyhow, when I listened last night, who knows, the effect might be reversed when I listen today, Whitney standing out, rather than Buble? I sensed the 'magic' in the other two videos, also. Amazing how the men dancing behaved, reminded me of flocks of starlings, what's it called, Murmurisation or something? For me, music has always been a large part of my life. I can sense the joy that being part of a successful band must be, having played the bass guitar for a few (less successful ones!) in my forties, before the stroke removed that pleasure too.

Your describing something being 'unveiled' rather than 'enhanced' rang true also.

This still doesn't explain what you think of the 'meaning of life'? Does Rupert think that 'it's that simple', I wonder? Or is there much more to it, as I suspect there is? Maybe this 'raising of consciousness' is only available to us when we have reached a certain stage of development? After many incarnations, if we have grown to a stage where we are 'eligible' to qualify, we can do so. So perhaps Tom and Rupert are both doing what they are meant to do, during this lifetime.

I sensed the 'special' nature of your post, is it just my ego clutching at straws, fooling itself, making itself important? Maybe, but in my heart I _feel_ a difference, a connection. Is my ego capable of fooling even my heart?

Sometimes when I write, I feel an opening of the flood gates, at that moment I could write pages about all different ideas. This is the same creativity that musicians and other artists feel, of that I feel certain. I feel it now. I'm listening to this song, the bass is easy enough to play in theory, maybe even in practise, but it can be heard at different levels. (Lianne La Havas)
 
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#16
See my edited post #14 above @Michael Larkin .

I have started a new post to add to my edited one above.
I will include a couple of music videos, of the type that I talked about. The one's by Bruce Hornsby are two that I'm currently enjoying.




This is a Ted talk by Elizabeth Robinson, at the heart of it, she is talking about the creativity that we both can sense. A connection to God. It remains my favourite Ted talk, maybe I'm a romantic fool! :)


A Near Death experience I was listening to last night. (I've watched it before) But at one point he explains how incredibly 'more' that he felt, but how even then, he knew how much further beyond that, God was. So for those who might foolishly think that 'enlightenment' is the end of the journey. Think on...(from around 5:45 if you don't want to hear the whole thing)

 
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Brian_the_bard

Lost Pilgrim
Member
#18
I watched the happiness video for a few minutes then switched it off. It just wasn't making any sense to me and sounded like some of the semi-random junk thrown together by the New Age BS creating software. Maybe others get something out of it but it's not for me.
 
#19
I watched the happiness video for a few minutes then switched it off. It just wasn't making any sense to me and sounded like some of the semi-random junk thrown together by the New Age BS creating software. Maybe others get something out of it but it's not for me.
I'm convinced there's something to what he is saying, but to pick the truffles out of the mud is difficult. Michael's experience in his post above is probably closely related to what the whole 'enlightenment' stuff is about.
 
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