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Dean Kirkland

Church of the Churchless

http://hinessight.blogs.com/church_of_the_churchless/

Located in Salem

Last update: December 31st, 1969 at 04:00 pm

ping: http://ignoregon.com/ping/271

153 post clicks in the past 90 days

My daughter, following in her father's churchlesss footsteps, doesn't believe in God. Or other religious fantasies. So it surprised her when my granddaughter, who is almost seven, popped up with this back-seat observation when they approached Disneyland recently. (They live...

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It’s sort of a chicken-and-egg question: which is primary, experiences or explanations? Each of us is actively engaged in both realms. We directly experience reality; we also seek explanations of what is being experienced. Sometimes to an excessive degree. I...

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Here's an amazing sign of the supernatural that happened to me recently. Except, it wasn't really amazing. Or, supernatural. Just seemed like it could be. Four days before I'd contacted the yard maintenance company that episodically helps us out with...

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Periodically my brain comes up with Profound Cosmic Observations. This weekend it is... (drum roll please)... Everything is equally important. Meaning, whatever we experience at any given moment possesses the same existential value. This applies both to me and other...

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I'm not sure how I feel about Ferris Babr's opinion piece in the New York Times, "Why Nothing is Truly Alive." On the whole, I think I like the idea. Why so much ambivalence? Why is it so difficult for...

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I don't go to church any more. But last Sunday I experienced an inspiring sermon... about the cosmic wonders discovered by science. Here's the best thing about the new series featuring Neil Degrasse Tyson, an astrophysicist: "Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey"...

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I feel like I need to defend my churchless cred. Yeah, a few days ago I put up a post that praised what the front cover says is A Toltec Wisdom Book, "The Voice of Knowledge." Can't be sure, but...

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I'm an easily-pleased book buyer. If there is just one memorable sentence in a book I've bought, a line that sticks with me, I consider my money well-spent. Don Miguel Ruiz' "The Voice of Knowledge" has that sentence. If you...

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The illusion of a separate self or soul dies hard. It's just so convincing, because this is how it feels to each of us: that someone, an "I," is looking both outward to the world and inward to our own...

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I felt betrayed when Matthew McConaughey launched into a praise God! acceptance speech after he won the Oscar for Best Actor last night. Guess I mistook his excellent acting on HBO's True Detective, where he plays an appealingly cynical existential...

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As churchless as I am, after reading this TIME story I'm more open now to the possibility that God exists. Or at least, that I could worship God. The idea for merging marijuana and ministry came through prayer, the couple...

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I'm best friends with awe. If anything awe and I are closer now, in my churchless days, than when I was a religious believer. (See here, here, and here.) Often my awe is stimulated by a simple thought: existence exists....

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Sam Harris has written a terrific response to this year's Edge question: "What scientific idea is ready for retirement?" He proposes that we discard the notion that science is only something that physicists, biologists, chemists, and other obviously science'y types...

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I"ve mused about this subject before, including in "You're religious, but are you right?" and "Anti-Pascal's wager bets on life." The question is: what if religious believers are wrong about God, afterlife, ultimate reality? Usually the consequences of being wrong...

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Wow. What a moving story. David Menasche's "Why I'm not afraid of dying." When I saw the title mentioned in a tweet, I will confess that my first thought was, "Oh, please, don't let the reason be I know that...

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You go to a cathedral. Or a rock concert. You stand on the ocean shore watching a sunset. Or in St. Peter's Square as the Pope speaks. If you feel uplifted, where does that sensation come from? The setting, what...

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Below is a recent comment left by Osho Robbins on this post. Though it concerns the specific beliefs of the India-based Sant Mat religious philosophy, Robbins makes some points that apply to all forms of religiosity. Such as mistaking subjectivity...

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Beliefs are not equal under the law. At least, not in the United States. Religious beliefs have an edge over non-religious beliefs, even when the believer holds the same belief. Which is absurd. By their nature, beliefs are a matter...

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My brain is following up on a previous blog post, "Brains are us: a fresh thought for a New Year." Now, I almost just wrote My brain is causing me to follow up... This shows how difficult it is to...

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OK, this isn't exactly a New Year's resolution blog post. But I don't believe in resolutions. Those of the spiritual variety, at least. I've expressed my disbelief here, here, and here. A fresh thought, though... I'm up with that. I...

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"Know thyself." Yeah, right. Tough to do under the best of circumstances, when the supposed self is out in the open, available for knowing. But modern neuroscience and psychology know that our conscious awareness is just the tip of the...

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I like Jack Haas a lot. Never met him. Just know him through his books. I've blogged about them here, here, here, and here. And now, here I go again. I'd stuck Haas' "The Dream of Being" under some other...

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Reuse. Recycle. Good advice for handling material stuff. Also practices that can be used with religious stuff. Recently someone emailed me, asking whether I still repeated the mantra I was taught after being initiated into a guru-based meditation practice. Part...

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Like I said in this post, there's a tangled web of financial dealings surrounding the newfound wealth of Gurinder Singh Dhillon and his family. Gurinder Singh is the current guru of Radha Soami Satsang Beas, an India-based spiritual organization I...

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Like I did in a post, this Tom Tomorrow comic points out the absurdity of prayer and thanking God for death/destruction. (click to enlargencize) Nice bit of CNN ridicule, also. (Wolf Blitzer did indeed ask a survivor if she thanked...

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Money (lots of it) and spirituality (questionable amount of it) continue to mix at Radha Soami Satsang Beas, the Indian religious organization I used to be a part of. Someone just emailed me a link to this news story, "Religare...

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I've meditated every day since 1970, with just a handful of exceptions. That's over forty years. During most of that time I thought I was engaged in a spiritual journey from illusion to enlightenment. Now, I don't believe much, if...

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I'm not big on praying. A few days ago I called it absurd, even in the face of tragedy. Prayers alone have zero effect on anything or anyone. Prayers plus action to change things... that can work. Philosophically, though, praying...

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I understand why people pray. I've done a lot of praying myself. It's a natural reaction to appeal to a higher power when a loved one is seriously ill, lives are in danger, or some other unwanted event begs for...

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This week's issue of New Scientist has a special section on consciousness. Conscious being that I am, I enjoyed reading about whatever the heck my consciousness consists of. The articles contained a lot of interesting information. Much progress is being...

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