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Dean Kirkland

Church of the Churchless

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

Located in Salem

Last update: July 14th, 2014 at 02:49 pm

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

153 post clicks in the past 90 days

Back in 1958 Alan Watts wrote a classic essay, "Beat Zen, Square Zen, and Zen." Beat and square, back in the 50's, were words roughly equivalent to our "cool" and "lame." Or "hip" and "traditional." A beatnik bore some resemblance...

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Behold: my "Four Recipes for Instant Strangeness." This is my most recent Strange Up Salem column in our town's alternative paper, Salem Weekly. It's got some churchless aspects to it, for sure. Strangeness is what we want, even if this...

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Schrödinger's cat is a perplexing animal that seemingly is both alive and dead before an observation is made of it. This thought experiment was intended to show how the weirdness of quantum mechanics could be applied to everyday objects. It's...

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During my thirty-five years as an active member of an Indian spiritual organization, Radha Soami Satsang Beas, I heard a lot about seva, selfless service. Sikhs are big on seva and Radha Soami Satsang Beas' (RSSB) teachings, a form of...

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"I am nothing." "I am God, or all." Somehow these seemingly contradictory hypotheses coexist within what the Shimmering Dead End blog calls the folk theory of enlightenment. Here's a diagram of the whole confusing thing. (click to enlarge) Pretty darn...

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Hey, Twitter certainly can be philosophical. In 140 characters or less. Here's a series of recent tweets from David Chapman that I enjoyed. ----------------------------------- David Chapman @Meaningness · Jun 28 Since All is One, seeming differences are illusion. Illusion is...

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The final episode of "Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey" ended with host Neil deGrasse Tyson, an astrophysicist, cogently describing how science is able to comprehend mysteries of the universe that other ways of knowing reality are unable to fathom. Like religion....

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I've heard the term, "God's eye view," before. But I haven't given it much thought. Maybe it was because I believed in God for so many years. I never questioned the notion that there could be a way of looking...

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Here's something different, Church of the Churchless blog post-wise. An audio recording of my ten-minute Stories from the Dark Side talk last month. Click here. Then on the orange play/stop button, top left side, next to my name: Brian Hines...

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After about fifty years of spiritual searching, what I've learned about God comes down not to answers but to two questions applicable to everybody -- including me. How do you know? What are the chances? There's a lot to say...

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I've flown both ways. For many years I Iooked upon the world through a conceptual prism where my belief in God, a being unseen and unknown, altered the perspective from which I saw things. Now, I do my best to...

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Sometimes a lot can be said in a short time. It all depends on how honest and direct the conversing is. With Russell, a Tai Chi friend who I hadn't seen for quite a while after he stopped coming to...

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Idly glancing at a bookshelf in our house a few days ago, I noticed a book that I bought back in 2010, Paul Thagard's "The Brain and The Meaning of Life." Since, I've been re-reading some of it each morning....

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The 24 hour cable news channels are a fairly recent invention. But the voice inside our head that chatters away almost non-stop likely is as old as modern human consciousness. There's a lot of similarity between so-called news anchors and...

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Driving home this evening, on my car radio I heard the end of an interview with Neil deGrasse Tyson, the astrophysicist who hosts the new Cosmos series. Tyson said: I try to have my philosophy disturbed every day. Beautiful. That's...

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Last night I was one of eight speakers who took part in the second Stories From the Dark Side event here in Salem, Oregon. I enjoyed myself. The organizers kindly provided a bottle of Jack Daniels and a couple of...

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I don't like to think about death. Especially my own. When my wife and I went to get our wills made, I asked the attorney to say "gerbiled" rather "died" whenever she needed to refer to my death. Yeah, it...

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One of the benefits of growing older -- I'm 65 -- is that you acquire some Zennish enlightenment without having to meditate on hard cushions, figure out koans, or do any other of the Official Zen stuff. Just seeing people...

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I'm glad my Amazon guilt led me to buy Dan Harris' "10% Happier" in the charming Paulina Springs Bookstore in Sisters, Oregon. Whenever I visit the bookstore, usually once a month in spring and summer, I do my best to...

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Some defenders of religion argue that religious belief is a harmless personal exercise. "What's the problem with people believing whatever they want? How does this hurt anyone?" Well, read Nebraska Senate Nominee Says Religious Beliefs Can Justify Breaking Any Law....

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I first heard about Barbara Brown Taylor's "Learning to Walk in the Dark" in a TIME magazine piece. Part of it is here. She used to be a minister, but gave that up -- partly because the church put too...

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I have a regular column in my town's bi-weekly alternative newspaper, the peculiarly named Salem Weekly, whose web site is called WillametteLive for some peculiar reason. (Hey, it's an alternative paper; my column is called Strange Up Salem; peculiar is...

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Here's my report concerning news of all things godly during the past week. Based on my reading of two daily newspapers, TIME, New Scientist, The New Yorker, online New York Times, and many perusals of blogs, web sites, and other...

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Today, here at the Church of the Churchless, we've got a short and simple question for believers in some extra-physical reality: What supernatural fact are you sure about? I was tempted to say 100% sure, or absolutely sure. But I'm...

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That's a great word, apatheism. I hadn't come across it until I read a recent New Scientist article, "Losing Our Religion." (On the magazine's web site it is called "God not-botherers: Religious apathy reigns.") Of course, New Scientist is a...

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Today the United States Supreme Court said it was just fine to have prayers from a "chaplain of the month" open a town's public meetings. Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, writing for the majority in a 5-to-4 decision that divided the...

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I've finished Max Tegmark's fascinating "Our Mathematical Universe," a book I blogged about before here. The final chapter was a bit of a letdown. Tegmark ambled off into extraneous subjects, like how Earth might come to its demise and whether...

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For several weeks I've been reading some of Max Tegmark's "Our Mathematical Universe" each morning. It's been a mind-bending journey, one which I'm about to complete -- just 26 pages left. Tegmark argues that rather than mathematics just being able...

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So what is irreligious, scientifically-minded, skeptical me doing holding prints of my hands that I was about to mail off to a person who does hand analysis -- and soon would tell me what those prints say about myself? Well,...

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I've meditated almost every day for thirty-four years. I like to think that those many, many hours of meditation (one to two hours a day for most of the time) have made me a better person. Maybe. But lots of...

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