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Mysticism versus Understanding
Mysticism in religion opens the door to all kinds of intellectual chicanery.
One of the great or fundamental issues for philosophy or theology is mysticism versus understanding, mythos versus logos. The J person calls for our understanding of “God” as a human being. He equates that with salvation, as in, “And this IS eternal life, that they understand you and the one that you have sent.” Where does he call for some mystical connection or loss of individuality or physicality? In HIS prayer, he asks that we may be “one” with god, but clarifies that as being in unity. Being in unity MUST mean being in unity of purpose, values and paradigm! IMO, J had NOTHING to do with mysticism, but came to eradicate it by demonstrating himself as LOGOS, the source of logic and reason versus MYTHOS, the ground of mysticism.
To think that final success is some mystical, impossible to understand, oneness is to deny the validity of all other natural, normal, morally defensible desires and needs. In such a situation everything loses definition. There is no valid definition of life, nor definition of tangible love as fulfilling those needs and desires, no enhancement of life beyond this mystical oneness. It makes “god” the end all and be all, and denies his character of humility and service, denies his offering of equality. It dissolves his being a friend and leaves him being the ultimate vacuum that sucks everything up into himself. It makes him the great demander for being the center of attention, the ultimate selfish egotist. It leaves him being defined as the center of power and control. It leaves him with no beauty or appreciable magnificence at all.
And why am I the problem in this regard? Why is the burden of submitting to this oneness upon me? If this is the great solution, then why doesn’t “god” submit to this oneness with me? I have no memory of choosing to be separate! The whole thing assumes facts not in evidence beyond any reason to even care to investigate or think along these lines.
Also, isn’t this idea of the mystical oneness the ultimate copout? An admission that we CANNOT understand and relate to as fully dimensional human beings? It requires that we lay down everything that we naturally cherish as human beings, including our rational faculties. Who is doing this completely? No one, and the people that promulgate this idea are the arrogant ones, the tricky egotistical deniers of reality. Meanwhile, they strive very hard to be somebody in the world, make a name for themselves. Hypocrisy! Which was the ultimate (temporary) condemnation by J-man.
The whole line of thinking is in stark contrast to J-man’s life and message as a human being, and his response to Phillip's request for him to "show us what God is like." His reply was, “This is it. If you have seen (understood, experienced) me, you have seen God.” The whole mystical oneness thing removes J from being the paradigm, the truth that goes into the paradigm, and the inspiration to care. It denies his claims of being THE ONE shepherd or messenger of god and pulls him down to just being another in a long line of mystics. It denies his claim to be the AUTHORITY on the truth who came from beyond! Can they not read? “All who came before me are false shepherds.”
Buddhism does not resolve the human condition, but merely helps some people cope with it. Within the "mystical oneness answer" there is a complete denial of his promises of “houses and lands”, the empowerment to move mountains, and the ability to judge ideas and doctrines; a complete denial of his statement about a resurrection and an age of punishment and justice. It denies his respect for physicality, personal sovereignty and freedom. To equate J with this is to be egregiously careless and sloppy in your reasoning.
Mysticism in religion opens the door to all kinds of intellectual chicanery. If you can be "mystical", you can entertain all sorts of fantastical, exotic concepts that are decoupled from any reality that we experience or that we would upon sober reflection even desire. Mysticism allows people to continue to live in denial and to be dishonest with themselves on the most fundamental level.
Lastly, sometimes this line of thinking makes me the source of evil. Anything that I see as evil and cannot see as good is strictly my own fault for thinking wrongly. All of the distasteful aspects of the world are only because I relate to them wrongly. Nature red in tooth and tong, the savage destruction wrought by geophysical catastrophic agencies, the nefarious activities of fellow human beings, the relentless assault on ourselves by disease and aging, the unspeakable suffering of myself and others are all WONDERFUL? Give me a break from this insidious denial of REALITY by my fellow homo sapiens! It is the ultimate frustration to try to reason with people that are addicted to mysticism, because they have already been broken with it.