Tag Archives: Personal

The Soul Without God And Theory


How can I explain?

Words can’t make you feel the deep, spiraling well I felt burrowing in my lungs as I stood in my verandah, staring at the clouds and knowing silently, calmly but profoundly that I exist.

No arguments can justify my fervent faith and devotion which I experienced as I sat everyday in front of my own sacred idols and prayed to them when I was six.

Not a single poem has been able to capture that of pain of realizing that my first lover didn’t really love me back. No verse can really explain the suffocating agony which ripped my innards into shreds then.

People will laugh if  I express that devastating feeling of being betrayed when my gods didn’t answer my desperate prayers at a time when I needed them most.

These are the moments which made me intensely aware of my being and that is precisely why words always feel so impotent when I try to express them.

Some philosophers say that language is the house of being. I think that is terribly stupid. Language might be the house of identity which can be communicated, but being precedes words. It is in fact a precondition of language. This is made obvious in those moments when language’s failure is so complete that it simply crumbles — in those events when we become speechless.

These are the times when life acquires a depth previously unknown or forgotten. It may not exactly be a moment of unbound joy (pain and sadness are just as adept). It may not even be a moment of uncontrollable emotion (people who practice mindfulness will know how calm observation has a silent profoundness to it).

I think these are simply the moments of intense awareness — the point when existence refuses to be ignored by consciousness. This is when we realize that the experience of life has a value independent of any more explanations.

You might have heard something similar from the New Age gurus and spiritual enthusiasts.
When they tactfully evade the use of ‘God’ to explain the meaning of these experiences, they often use words like higher consciousness, the divine, the supreme consciousness and so on.

What I found common in most of the explanations I’ve encountered is that theses moments are theorized as events when the individual psyche ‘connects’ with someone or something larger, higher, placed above the individual in the spiritual ladder.

I not only think that these explanations are absurd, improvable or unnecessary; I also think that they are an insult.

It is to say, as if, the experiences aren’t worthwhile in themselves. That you have to construct an elaborate system of theories to give that experience some meaningful value. And these constructs are ultimately equally unable to ‘explain’ the cause or logic of any value whatsoever.

What is this special higher consciousness which makes us feel like this? What is this god-like divine and from where does it derive this powerful energy from? If these ‘higher’ beings and energies don’t need anymore explanations then why does the experiences of depth need to be justified by theories?

These explanations merely transfer the experiential valence of the events of depth into something else. It’s the same old religious trick in the garb of spirituality.

Their hypocrisy is often revealed when they themselves admit that words can’t explain the spiritual experiences and then go on to create fun, often cliched theories of spirituality. (Putting faith or intuition above reason is perhaps their favorite one as it allows them to bypass science and gain a few blind acolytes.)

I think that the moments of intense awareness, the moments when life acquires an unspeakable depth are preserved and relived the best without any words or gurus.

I think its time that the spirit reclaims its independence from the shackles of God and theory.

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Truths, Experience and the Return of Falsity


When I was a kid I always thought that the deaths in films were real and that the actors who died were actually born again to star in their next blockbuster.

My fantasy fell apart when I actually saw the video of a film shoot in which the hero died 5 times within the span of fifteen minutes.
It was one of my first encounters with the failure of Truth.

It’s amazing how these early life lessons are buried under pretentious, fallacious theoretical bubbles.
How can people — scholars, intellectuals and activists — actually accept that everything we believe to be true actually becomes our reality? (Yes, I am talking about the post-modernists.) If the world really worked this way there would have been no disappointments. Expectations, faith and hope would have never crumbled as easily as it usually does.

Thus, even if there is no ultimate Truth, there sure exists some kind of falsity. There exists a difference between what we think or consider as the Truth and what we experience as reality. The problem simply is that we can’t demarcate between the two — the nature of our ever-changing knowledge doesn’t allow any permanent dichotomies.

And this is precisely why I think we should approach knowing in a different way than we usually do.

The base of Human Knowledge is not knowing.

Our quest for knowing is fueled by this partial or complete void; because, if we already know everything, then why seek anymore?
Remembering this fact is intensely liberating.

Let us not pretend that we uncover some hidden truth in the ‘outside’ world which we can’t even be sure of (as the world, for us, only exists in our perception).
I don’t mean to exclude the possibility that we have indeed discovered some thing which is universal, permanent or objective. But we just can’t be sure of them. Our knowledge is still in process, and this process includes change,rejection and return of truths which were previously rejected. The world was once flat and now it’s round. Who knows if it won’t turn into a triangle or not?

Knowledge and Truth will always be something which we put in. It exists only as Human knowledge. It is an act of our minds.

So let us pretend  instead that Truth is a story we tell which makes sense.
But does this mean that everything proclaimed as Truth becomes real?

Based on our collective experience of the world, Truth seems to be multiple and fluid. But not everything seems to be true. Not every medicine system cures the disease which it itself claims to cure. Not every hypothesis is proved right even when the person conducting experiments believes in it completely.
Newton is reported to have been much more interested in Alchemy than Physics. Why is it that all his time spent in the search of knowledge, only his experiments with physics bore fruit but not his alchemy?
There is a reason why newton discovered the laws of motion and not the philosopher’s stone.

Truth is the narrative which works as Truth.
For any story to become reality, it has to correspond to experience.
If I believe that the sky is green and I myself see it as blue, then that belief fails as my own personal reality. Similarly, collective narrative has to reasonably correspond to a collective experience.

We don’t necessarily need an outside structure of comparison to judge the narratives — we can use their own claims and predictions to discover their Truth value.

By the same logic, Truths can be hierarchic.
Any Reality Narrative which fails less is obviously better than the ‘Truth’ which fails more in experience.If harvest rituals promise bountiful crops and they don’t as compared to the scientific techniques of farming, then the latter is a more reliable Truth for the society than the former. (Whatever anyone wants to believe.)

And the narratives whose claims lie outside the realm of experience by definition like the existence of God, life after death, heaven and hell will become less legitimate as a common reality when other narratives exist.
Narratives which can be judged inside lived experiences are always more reliable because we can check it’s falsity (or the lack of it). Narratives whose base claims are undetermined are dangerous because when it reaches its fanatic heights, people with other beliefs have no way of negotiation — you either have blind belief in them or you are branded a betrayer, heretic or a conspirator.

This in no way means that such narratives are illegitimate. They shouldn’t be completely excluded. They just can’t be relied upon as COMMON Truth, on the basis of which a WHOLE society can make its decisions.

I am not really suggesting that we create any rigid structures. All Truth, it seems, is probable. As we haven’t experienced the whole of existence, proclaiming any narrative as the ultimate TRUTH will be a fallacy of presumption (same applies for the rejection of the possibility of any permanent Truth).
Knowledge should always be open-ended because knowing is always in process. As long as we live we are experiencing beings.
Knowledge is merely a pattern we put into these experiences, which enriches them, binds them and in turn create new experiences in our consciousness.

Personally as a knower, my ultimate aim isn’t to find out the ‘TRUTH’. Especially when the existence of such a truth itself isn’t absolutely assured (although essentially the question remains open).
I see life in terms of experience and hence, to me such narratives are a way to gain a depth in experience.
To unite scattered feelings, events, memories and thoughts. To combine them in different ways. And to experience those different combinations in different ways.
Perhaps this is too much philosophy for one post 😛

–Dee


WHY SO MUCH PHILOSOPHY?

My first answer to that is — Why not?

But I understand why many people are wondering about this question.

We all are children of post-modernism now. We all have known the “anything goes” motto in some way or the other.
Initially it does feel liberating.
I was a fan too not a long time ago.

But then reality strikes.
The dark side of this is that no one can really counter the fanaticism which has slowly saturated our world. And I am not only talking about people with guns, scriptures and suicide vests.

There has been a general taking away of liberties all over the world. Our existence is in threat. Even the existence of our planet. And we don’t have anything to fall back on — to counter such threats in a substantial way.

One may question why this taking away of freedom is a bad thing.
To them I reply, that question’s answer doesn’t really lie in some high-brow theoretical argument, but in plain experience.

And yet until we put them into narrative, we will always be silenced by the fanatics.

The following posts are my attempt to at least try creating a position through which we can fight back —

Trying To Escape 21st Century Nihilism By Finding Out The Inherent Purpose Of Life
https://deerayolia.wordpress.com/2014/08/18/the-inherent-purpose-of-life-is-absurdly-clear/

Attempt To Create A Charter Which Isn’t Too Rigid But Which Gives Us Some Guidelines To Fall Back Onhttps://deerayolia.wordpress.com/2014/05/19/the-new-charter/

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Baboon Banter About Judging People


Judgement

“Never judge a person.”

We have all heard this phrase. We are bombarded by it in social media, popular memes, sit coms, our friends keep repeating this and even our judgmental relatives have started parroting the same fashionable advice.

Although I agree with the accepting spirit which informs the thought, but to follow it as a life-rule is absurd.

All of us have to judge if we can trust a person or not. We have to figure out if the other human being is friendly or hostile to have a meaningful relationship.

If you don’t, you may find yourself lying unconscious on an unknown street mugged, raped or even murdered.

Judgment is necessary for survival. It’s a life skill.

But there is a world of difference between judging and pre-judging.

The latter is about presumptions, prejudices and stereotypes.

It’s not based on the knowledge about the person per se, but about the ideas and formulas one has already imposed on them without checking if they are true or not.

Commenting on a person’s style on the basis of the clothes they wear is judging.

Labeling a person ‘slut’, ‘gay’ or ‘stupid’ on the basis of their clothes is pre-judging because there is no direct relationship whatsoever between the labels and the clothes.

Most of the arguments I hear against judging people is that every judgment is subjective.

It is. So what?

It doesn’t mean that we don’t judge people; it simply means we don’t treat our judgments as divine, permanent and universal Truths.

We keep the possibility of being wrong open and modify our judgments when we actually are.

I agree that we often don’t know from where people come from, their personal history, their internal struggles, demons and anxieties. We can never really know a person completely. We get to see only a part of their lives.

And so we should always be aware of this and remember that our judgments are only about that part of a person which we get to know and not their whole being.

I may criticize a person for having anti-liberal, conservative views about individual choice. It doesn’t mean that I see that person as a monster.

The judgment will only be about certain parts of her ideology. There is no reason why other aspects of her being won’t pleasantly surprise me.

The need for judgment is very clear. If we don’t judge terrorists and rapists we don’t have any grounds to stop them and we end up with a fucked society.

However, always judging other people for the sake of it is foolish, time-consuming and exhausting. Not everything is necessarily right or wrong, good or bad – there is a neutral zone when people are simply different.

Judging a person for having different tastes in music, clothes and ice creams will simply be stupid and is often not needed.

I firmly believe that our judgments should help us figure out people, life and ourselves. But if it makes us confused and miserable then it becomes counterproductive and cumbersome.

Lastly, to end with a cliché, I also believe that we should mostly judge ourselves first before judging others.

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The Gypsy In The Sewer


Cub

Metal bars stuck around the hollow of his stomach since the day he was born – it never went away.
The nomad was abandoned, his mother was the drain. Everybody knew the stranger from the underground.
The gypsy roamed the international sewers trading a part of him with the merchants from the surface.

If you were to be one of them, you would definitely ask, “Where is his gut?”
And there would be none.

Let your name be Alice.

A louse crawled in his flowing, gray hair and Alice ignored it, pretending to be disgusted by the sewage instead. Perhaps she wasn’t pretending after all. Alice was genuine.

A leash held him in. The jail was made up of metal pipes filled with the black bile from the surface which their citizens couldn’t stand. It was made to prevent the traders from stealing the nomad.
The Gypsy from the sewer smiled from the enclosure.
He could stand us. He could stand anything.

The people liked him because he was the only one to ask, and they wanted to tell.
His eyes would gleam with the sheen of dreams, as if his tear ducts collected your stories.

He remembered each one of them.
He remembered the time when the two towers fell as the bird went blind in the middle of the city.
He remembered the boy who left tears on his shoulders when he told him about his brother who left.
When that girl gave him daisies, he asked her how she found them and he still remembers the garden in her backyard where she played with pythons.
He hasn’t forgotten the wall which fell when the cold years went away.

When he slept it all came back.
He walked through the garden, breathing the dust from the towers, looking for the brother who was lost past the broken boundary wall.

In his sleep he lived on the surface, amidst the part of the lives the people left behind.
He worked the hardest in his dreams. Breaking and mending the weak, creaking parts – making a whole which functioned.
He found the answers to the questions they didn’t even know they will ask.

When he awoke, the answer was found in the cage of his stomach.
Each time it was different.
Once, it was the bonsai tree with thin, paper leaves.
The merchants took it up to the surface and planted it in their cities. The plant grew into a metropolis.
Then he made a red star and it made the wall which crumbled.

A tiger cub sat curious in his stomach when Alice told the nomad about her cycle which broke. The cub’s piercing eyes searched her face, maybe looking for the tooth which went missing when she fell, or imagining the white fluid dripping down her lips and eyes. Her stomach was yet not fat.

His pupils dilated, its throat vibrated – its purrs called to you, Alice.

When she finished telling her tales, the other merchants handed him the money.
The cub was squeezed out of the cage.
It trembled with hesitance. Its tiny claws dug into the metal of the pipes.

Alice picked it up; the tiger’s licks left wet, red trails on her neck.

The merchant group walked away – ready to fuel their machine of civilization with dreams that they would distort and promises they couldn’t keep.
This one would be good for a decade.
After which the merchants will return to buy a part of the nomad again.
It’s best for business.

Alice glanced back towards the gypsy again. His cage lay hollow, his eyes caved-in.
He will never see his cub alive again.
The surface which thrives on his organ implants bars him from living his own dreams.
Or does it?

Alice strutted away.
A leash has its way.
A louse still hangs on his silvery strands which may never shine with Sun rays.

The light awaits the nomad.

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Something To Live By


Image

Existence is Fluid;

the Universe is Multiple;

Each Life is Unique;

A Human is Born Free;

Justice is its Need;

Happiness is Holistic;

God is You.

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Failed Paths, No More


I am tired of walking
On your dreary paths.
I shall rather sleep
On a patch of grass which is my own,
And later fly in a sky which chooses me.

My life has too much laughter destined for it.

I can’t waste my breath
Running after dreams
Which you failed to achieve,
Or obeying rules
Which failed you.

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Baboon Banter On Morality


mORALITY

 

The Baboon has been going mad-er day-by-day and his babbling is the only thing which has prevented his total mental breakdown.It is the special subject of morality which has baked his brains into a plum cake.

The Baboon realises that morality is relative. It is different for every monkey, slug and elephant.
Morality doesn’t exist in the world. It is created by our morbid minds.
That is precisely the reason why some cultures find human sacrifice as a way to appease Gods and some others define it to be an abominable crime.

What is good and what is bad for the society is based on which moral codes have managed to gain acceptance and influence with the majority.

But does this mean that anything goes?
Or should this subjectivism just lead to empty, meaningless nihilism?

Before the Baboon wrecks his head by banging it on a stone, or it spontaneously explodes, he should make something clear.

The Baboon agrees that moral codes have traditionally been used as a tool for power and control.
The interests of the moral codes preached by the society is often not good for the whole society, but the profit and privilege for the minority elites.

Moral codes frequently create social norms which seek to confine individuals in a fixed identity, creating group divisions while eliminating any difference.

The most efficient example of both of these are gender norms and the morality based on it.

In a patriarchal society, morality often has double standards which favours males — like the importance of female chastity is often paramount, while males are allowed more social freedom.  It is often OK for males to have premarital, or even extramarital, sex; a woman is often labelled as a ‘whore’ or even stone pelted in the same situation.

Gender and gender norms first divide the population into two genders, homogenise their identities and behaviours of individuals inside each gender, and finally exclude individuals who are different like the people belonging to the LGBTQ community.

Morality and moral codes of the society have never been good for the society.
But does this mean we abandon the concept of morality altogether?
Or does the subjectivity of morality makes everything right?

Does this mean Nazism, slavery, colonialism and patriarchy become al right?

In what the intellectual brains like to call as post-modernism, this seems to be exactly the battle call — “Anything goes”.

But this only seems to be true in arguments, debates and discussions.

Experience assertively differs.

Can we really justify the experience of those who were slaughtered under the Nazi regime? Can we justify the experience of  the slaves? Can we justify the experience of the colonised? Can we justify the experience of the victims of patriarchy?

At least, the Baboon can’t.

And this is precisely the base of the Baboon’s morality — experience.

It is only through the experience of a situation that we can ascertain the morality of the situation. There maybe nothing right in any situation, but there are things which cannot be justified, and hence, are wrong.

We have arrived at a point of moral emptiness only because of too much chat-chat and not much experience. Because most of our experiences are virtual we have lost our touch with life itself.

That is why some people can parody the 9/11 in an online image board, while people who had actually experienced it still get nightmares even after 13 years.

The Baboon rejects traditional structures of morality.
This in no way means that the Baboon doesn’t believe in morality.

The Baboon believes that every situation is unique in itself, and ethical theory is defunct because it often generalises situations and forms rules according to it like a wannabe science.
That is why moral codes don’t work.

Morality is an individual activity.

It should be based on empathy, rationality and intuition, rather than traditional bullshit.

This is because tradition ascribes the label of right to things which cannot be justified through empathy like marital rape, honour killings or burning people at stake.

Morality should be a reaction to a situation rather than blind following of rules.

The Baboon believes in the Moral Compass but not in Moral Codes.

Morality is subjective and may change from person to person, according to different situations.

This in no way means an individual should forsake morality altogether.

And here ends the Baboon Banter on Morality.

Eat your cupcakes!

 

— X —

The Baboon apologises for being late.

The world was on the brink of a nuclear war.

Or maybe the Baboon just had a bad dream.

The Baboon loves you.

Oink!

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City Introspections: The Pebbles


He can read the pebbles.
Like scrolls written by the river, he reads their stories and weeps.

Some pebbles are old. They tell stories of a time when the river was clean, healthy and alive.
The pebbles’ smoothness tells him of the joy the fishes, snakes and the naked girls and boys used to have a thousand years ago.

The pebbles are like totems telling mythologies of times when the earth was respected, the city was dead and the river was alive.

The majority of the pebbles are now black; in places which was once a river bed.
The river is now dead, the earth disrespected and the city is alive.
Or is it?

Some little children stack them up like little skyscrapers and kick them down for fun.
The stories the pebbles tell are unheard by them.

Listen to the pebbles.
What do they whisper?

We have witnessed the jungles and the villages.
We have captured rivers in our grooves.
We have seen you take birth.
We have seen you grow.
We have seen you become a monster.

Beware.

Don’t throw us away when we warn you.
We are the stories which make up your boundary walls.
We are your protectors.
When we fall away, the wild will devour you.
The snakes you killed, the hyenas you slaughtered, the wolves you ate — all of them will return.

When we fall away, nature will return.

Who will protect you from the storms and the sewer-floods then?

We don’t ask for much.

Heed us when we talk to you.
Don’t piss in the river.
Don’t blacken it with your shit.
It is the life source of you retarded millions.
When it will truly die — you shall cannibalise on your life.

We love you.

Love us back.

Or go fucking die.

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The Room Is Not Empty, It’s You


Empty: It’s You

Is it the room that is empty
Or is it you
Who can be hidden
By a box of five walls
And a granite floor
And negate
Your body
Your Breath
Your existence
Your soul?

Stop blaming the world for its blindness
When you yourself have gouged your eyes out.

See.
Hear.
Touch.
Smell.
Taste.

Exist.

— X —
If you liked it, the baboon shall very well want your comments below.
Want some doughnuts?
Lobsters!
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