For any who might be interested, let me briefly continue my defense against the very reasonable charge that I am too cavalier about “facts’, and too willing to dismiss them when they come from others with whom I disagree. The charge against me was made in reference to this earlier statement of mine:
"Once the religious - or spiritual - experience has been encountered, it needs no further justification. If it has any true power, it is experienced as a higher form of knowing, and cannot be undermined by someone else's logic, or someone else's facts."
The first leg of my defense, outlined in my last post (above) written about a week ago, points to the odd “fact”, seldom discussed in our society and culture, that facts themselves – and by that I mean ALL facts – are actually a creation of the mind. Each of our five recognized senses – sight, hearing, touch, smell, and taste – rely on a complex process of taking in “data”, breaking that data down into coded signals, and relaying those signals via the nervous system to the brain. The brain receives the “dots and dashes” if you will, and turns them into seemingly “real” concrete reality.
The fragrance of a flower, for instance – as well as an image of that same flower – is fully a creation of the brain. With only dots and dashes to work with, the brain could conceivably do anything! Ostensibly (and according to the beliefs of some) there is no Being out there (or in there) making up the rules, telling the brain what to do. Dots and dashes come in, and an image (or smell, or sound, or tactile feeling, or taste) comes out. All of these images, smells, sounds, tastes, etc. are simply interpretations of Morse code-like signals, and have no provable external counterpart. The signals could come from anywhere, and be interpreted in a billion different ways of course, or in no way at all.
Nonetheless, they are wholly interpretations, and represent a single brain’s “decision” as to what to do with the incoming data stream.
(Of course, that there is such a thing as the Brain, which can both literally and figuratively make anything of these various signals, is remarkable in itself; but another topic entirely.)
So in my opinion, this analysis brings the very existence of facts into question. If the brain is making it all up, who anywhere or at any time has any corner on Truth?
The second problem with “facts” is more commonly understood, and involves their selective use and application. It’s almost as if Belief comes first in this world, and Facts come second. All of us (Bah Humbug, Mark, and myself as well) tend to search for those particular facts which support our beliefs. The beliefs themselves seem to come from a bias – or perhaps just from a more innocent Tendency – that we each have to view the world in a certain way. That Tendency of course in a very major way defines us, and is experienced as an essential core aspect of our existence. It also separates us from those who we now perceive as “The Infidels” – that is, those who have greatly different emotional or intellectual Tendencies from our own, which if accepted would deny the validity of our own current existence.
And so we very reasonably search for “facts” with which to bolster our own views, and which render the views of those who oppose us null and void.
In other words, my facts are Constructive, in that they help to flesh out a world that I already believe exists, and that I know I am suited for and can live within. YOUR facts, however, are Destructive – because they create an alien world for me – one which I can’t understand, and can take no effective part in.
Even if we could agree that facts are real – that blue really is blue – I still can’t abide a world based on another’s facts, because those other facts are in truth based on another’s Tendency, which is to say another’s actual being. And I am not “the other”, unless and until – according to the beliefs of some – I can relinquish my belief in Self, and fall into a belief in One; where we All are the Other, and we are all (at the same time) the self-same Being.
But that’s a big step, and again, I’m not sure it’s even the topic of this particular conversation.
Allow me to rest my case at this point, and wait for the criticism. I’m sure there are areas within this analysis where skepticism (hopefully short of scorn) is well deserved. Peace/out - P.
More information about text formats