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I may have claimed enlightenment

I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/5/12 9:15 PM
At some point, I may have claimed enlightenment or actual freedom.

That is completely unfactual, I am not actually free or enlightened at all.

I am actually a bad person.

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/5/12 9:49 PM as a reply to James Yen.
James Yen:
I am actually a bad person.

Is this an official claim?

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/6/12 2:13 AM as a reply to James Yen.
My theory is that you're just desperate for attention. Heck, I even thought maybe you're one of those socially repressed gay guys. How else would it be justifiable to write little false stories about yourself, hoping to impress a mostly male internet-forum audience?

Do you, for instance, go to DIY forums and lie about how you built a whole house using nothing but a large, protruding, powerful, noisy chainsaw? Or maybe go to bodybuilding forums and post fake photoshop collages of your head on pictures of humongous, muscular, naked male bodies?

Bad boy! Bad bad boy! emoticon

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/6/12 4:18 AM as a reply to James Yen.
James Yen:
At some point, I may have claimed enlightenment or actual freedom.

That is completely unfactual, I am not actually free or enlightened at all.

I am actually a bad person.


Quoted for future reference in case you delete yet another attention seeking post.

Nick (moderator)

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/6/12 8:10 AM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
The Loff:
My theory is that you're just desperate for attention. Heck, I even thought maybe you're one of those socially repressed gay guys. How else would it be justifiable to write little false stories about yourself, hoping to impress a mostly male internet-forum audience?

Do you, for instance, go to DIY forums and lie about how you built a whole house using nothing but a large, protruding, powerful, noisy chainsaw? Or maybe go to bodybuilding forums and post fake photoshop collages of your head on pictures of humongous, muscular, naked male bodies?

Bad boy! Bad bad boy! emoticon

HAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/6/12 9:12 AM as a reply to Tommy M.
Its tempting to cut this guy some slack, but really its pretty lame that he doesn't try to really interact with the teachings from a place of innocent curiousity, as the rest of us seem to attempt and advocate.

I understand the difficulty of dealing with MCTB style teachings, for some it can be one more thing to fail at that had promised a better life. How do we help James out of this trap?


Some say a guru is he who helps a student give up that which they cannot give up themselves, but I am at a loss for where james can find this person.

james, you need to take a chill pill. Try to be honest, try to be open, try to be naive.

Try to trust your therapist, your family, and strangers on the internet. Its great practice.

I also think that Bruno's post, while quite humorous, sort of misses the point.

I don't think James is lying with the intent to deceive us readers, i think he is trying to deceive himself. Buying into the 'tape loops and stories', as Ingram puts it over and over again.

Anyway, james, buddy, as soon as you show some earnestness and maturity, I think this could become a place for you to interact with people who understand, to some degree, what you are going through.

Until then... grow the fuck up. Plox.

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/8/12 3:22 AM as a reply to m m a.
Actually, one of the strangest persons I have ever met was a compulsive liar. She spent several months at the math department at my previous university successfully pretending to be a PhD student. I mean she managed to get a desk at the student room, she would go to student outings, she even had a topic for her thesis, which was at the same time appropriate for the department and sufficiently obscure that no-one else was interested in it.

I don't know what motivated her to do it, but I was told that once she was discovered she moved into some other university to do the same thing. From one long interaction I had with her (we actually went on a date!) I eventually came to believe she lacked an inner life of her own, and perhaps she tried to get it by proximity with others...

But quite unlike James, she never came clean, she never admitted to her lies.

Heck if James has actually gone through these phases in which he deceived himself of having attained some valuable mental condition (I am referring to his magick phase, his enlightened phase and his actually free phase), I can certainly empathize with that: self-deception is a malaise I have had intense contact with in the last year or so.

People are prone to believe what they want to believe. Here is an excerpt from the lovely book "How we decide," by Jonah Lerer .

[quote="How we decide," by Jonah Lerer]
It's now possible to see why partisan identities are so persistent. Drew Westen, a psychologist at Emory University, imaged the brains of ordinary voters with strong party allegiances during the run-up to the 2004 election. He showed the voters multiple, clearly contradictory statements made by each candidate, John Kerry and George Bush. For example, the experimental subject would read a quote from Bush praising the service of soldiers in the Iraq war and pledging "to provide the best care for all veterans." Then the subject would learn that on the same day Bush made this speech, his administration cut medical benefits for 164,000 veterans. Kerry, meanwhile, was quoted making contradictory statements about his vote to authorize war in Iraq.

After being exposed to the political inconsistencies of both candidates, the subject was asked to rate the level of contradiction on a scale of 1 to 4, with 4 signaling a strong level of contradiction. Not surprisingly, the reactions of voters were largely determined by their partisan allegiances. Democrats were troubled by Bush's inconsistent statements (they typically rated them a 4) but found Kerry's contradictions much less worrisome. Republicans responded in a similar manner; they excused Bush's gaffes but almost always found Kerry's statements flagrantly incoherent.

By studying each of these voters in an fMRI machine, Westen was able to look at the partisan reasoning process from the perspective of the brain. He could watch as Democrats and Republicans struggled to maintain their political opinions in the face of conflicting evidence. After being exposed to the inconsistencies of their preferred candidate, the party faithful automatically recruited brain regions that are responsible for controlling emotional reactions, such as the prefrontal cortex. While this data might suggest that voters are rational agents calmly assimilating the uncomfortable information, Westen already knew that wasn't happening, since the ratings of Kerry and Bush were entirely dependent on the subjects' party affiliations. What, then, was the prefrontal cortex doing? Westen realized that voters weren't using their reasoning faculties to analyze the facts; they were using reason to preserve their partisan certainty. And then, once the subjects had arrived at favorable interpretations of the evidence, blithely excusing the contradictions of their chosen candidate, they activated the internal reward circuits in their brains and experienced a rush of pleasurable emotion. Self-delusion, in other words, felt really good. "Essentially, it appears as if partisans twirl the cognitive kaleidoscope until they get the conclusions they want," Westen says, "and then they get massively reinforced for it, with the elimination of negative emotional states and activation of positive ones."

This flawed thought process plays a crucial role in shaping the opinions of the electorate. Partisan voters are convinced that they're rational—it's the other side that's irrational—but actually, all of us are rationalizers. The Princeton political scientist Larry Bartels analyzed survey data from the 1990s to prove this point. During the first term of Bill Clinton's presidency, the budget deficit declined by more than 90 percent. However, when Republican voters were asked in 1996 what happened to the deficit under Clinton, more than 5 5 percent said that it had increased. What's interesting about this data is that so-called high-information voters—these are the Republicans who read the newspaper, watch cable news, and can identify their representatives in Congress — weren't better informed than low-information voters. (Many low-information voters struggled to name the vice president.) According to Bartels, the reason knowing more about politics doesn't erase partisan bias is that voters tend to assimilate only those facts that confirm what they already believe. If a piece of information doesn't follow Republican talking points—and Clinton's deficit reduction didn't fit the tax-and-spend liberal stereotype— then the information is conveniently ignored. "Voters think that they're thinking," Bartels says, "but what they're really doing is inventing facts or ignoring facts so that they can rationalize decisions they've already made." Once you identify with a political party, the world is edited to fit with your ideology.


For instance I have come to find the "silly or sensible" exercise of actualism, at least the way I practiced it, to be a form of rationalization. In the urgency to put an end my human suffering, I have made all sorts of rationalizations, ignoring information and evidence left and right, so as to maintain faith in certain goals and procedures. The ensuing havoc was quite the formidable teacher, my tendency for religious-type thinking suffered severe impediment.

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/8/12 8:18 AM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:
But quite unlike James, she never came clean, she never admitted to her lies.


He didn't.

He wrote "I may have claimed enlightenment".

This is not nit-picking on words. Rather, this particular choice of words is a clear signal for people who have had the misfortume of having to learn how to notice these signals.

This is actually his idea of an apology (as expressed by the "bad person").

He thinks an apology is the same as accepting blame, which he doesn't like, hence the "may". He also thinks an apology is a special formula he has to utter - the "bad person" bit - which will then allow him to carry on as before, in a "forgive and forget" sort of way.

There is no indication that he's actually trying to take responsibility for his past and present actions, just a "please be nice to me again" type of reaction.

When six-year-olds behave like this, it's a bit tiresome, but they grow out of it. When adult human beings behave like this, it's quite alarming.

He's a troll. He's also probably very unhappy and might benefit from getting real-life help.

My two cents.

Cheers,
Florian

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/8/12 7:52 PM as a reply to Florian.
On several occasions James has stated he gets a kick out of fucking with people on forums(this one in particular). I think the best way to describe him would be "an asshole".
I'm on a bit of an anti-idiot compassion spree in my personal life so I may be way off, but I think a lot of people are giving him WAY to much credit and understanding. There may be some sort of deep seeded reasons for him being a prick, but he is an adult and knows that he is acting like a jerk. His choice, I certainly don't feel the need to make excuses for a douche nozzle like him.

Metta,

Brian.

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/8/12 9:48 PM as a reply to Bruno Loff.
Bruno Loff:
For instance I have come to find the "silly or sensible" exercise of actualism, at least the way I practiced it, to be a form of rationalization.


That sounds fascinating. Would you care to share more? How was it used as a rationalization?

RE: I may have claimed enlightenment
Answer
9/8/12 10:23 PM as a reply to James Yen.
He's right though, he did claim it.

However, claiming and it actually being a fact are two totally different things.

I don't mind if he claims it. ;)