we may be communicating at cross purposes at this point. I mention thatphenomenology was imperfect in the podcast and simply provides a number oftools. For me, at least, scepticism is a given and throughout the podcastepisode, scepticism was on display regarding the narratives that run throughBuddhism and the self-referential discourse that takes place in Buddhistcircles. The same applies to much discussion regarding spiritual transformationin general and part of the reasoning behind the incorporation ofphenomenological tools is to leave those self-referential spaces. I was alsoreferring to wider contemporary uses of phenomenological tools and not whateverhas been discussed at this site, which I haven’t been involved in. As fortrusting someone’s phenomenological description, it’s an importantconsideration and problematic if we assume the description is complete andaccurate. The way I see it, and describe in the episode, phenomenologicaldescriptions are an attempt at accurate description and are therefore alwaysimperfect and typically a work in progress. The point of bringing suchdescriptions into a critical feedback loop is to dismantle the sorts oflinguistic tropes that pass for description of spiritual experiences and createa culture of increasing transparency. Demanding that an individual find betterways to describe, define and give form to experience forces a certainintellectual discipline in which critique can refine understanding, highlightspiritual traps and push discussion/understanding forward by not settling oninitial formulations, or the confirmation of expectations within a closed, orself-referential practice group. This requires discipline. Phenomenology as anintellectual, descriptive practice is a discipline in this regard. It is also agroup practice, where sharing can dismantle assumptions, force clarity and soon. I have found in my own extra-curricular spiritual practice, that not beingable to rely on Buddhist language, or spiritual language and the accompanying ineffabilityof it all, has dismantled many of my own assumptions and myths regardingpractice and its results that has been sobering to say the least as well as leading to the sorts of experimentation at my blog and, obviously, on the podcast. Secondly, Ithink that at bottom, we are social, co-emergent beings. The idea ofindividualism in its atomised extreme brought about during the last century inthe West is, in my humble opinion, inaccurate. Such a conceptualisation ismanifest in our language of solipsism. I think that our emotions,self-consciousness and most of our thinking are not in the least original. Theproblem is not whether we experience the same or similar things, but to whatdegree we are capable of experiencing, thinking anything that can be consideredoriginal. The challenge is to push our current collective understanding ofphenomena forward, not reproduce the linguistic formulae that currently exist,and therefore reproduce pre-existing thought and current ideology, Buddhist or otherwise. This means working on theideological systems that dominate Buddhist or spiritual discourse, which tend towards sollopsism and escapism and, specifically in western Buddhism, excessive individualism. If you seelanguage as participation, then it starts to make more sense why description is so important. Thedescriptions laid out by those who have achieved first path or have had a majorspiritual breakthrough or peak experience are typically solipsistic. In adisciplined feedback dialogue, questioning can strip away all the additionalbaggage, as often takes place on this forum, to reveal what actually took placeand what is actually taking place. As you probably know, spiritual experiencescan be so powerful that people weave all of their psychological baggage, needs,and expectations into them, or go down the ineffability or spiritual poetrypaths. The idea of going further with all this would be an extension, in somesenses, of what has taken place here. The objective to remove awakeningphenomena, and the after effects, from enclosed spaces like this, to make itmore available to the wider world, to decodify it: to liberate awakening fromBuddhism and not leave it in the hands of spirituality. My view is thatphilosophy would need to play a great part in this venture and not just thesciences.